Is it typical to be experiencing so much discomfort 5 weeks post op?

i had a facelift, neck lift and a long incision brow lift five weeks ago. I have visual and hearing sensitivity, dry eyes and a throbbing forehead at the end of every day. I also feel sinus pressure. it's pretty painful. I feel it is the browlift that is causing my problems. It is worse when I am active, also, the more I use my face. Expressions etc..

Doctor Answers 24

Sinus Pressure May Be Unrelated

Thanks for your question. It certainly sounds like some of your symptoms, especially pain that worsens with activity and movement, may be related to your surgery. At 5 weeks post-op, your body is still healing. I suspect that you'll experience significant -- though gradual -- improvement over the next few weeks. Be patient with yourself and get as much rest as possible. Your sinus symptoms may be a separate issue; those should be evaluated by your primary care doctor or an ENT. At any rate, the surgeon who performed your procedure should be able to offer you a more accurate timeline for recovery from here on out. Best of luck with your recuperation.

Stockton Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Sinus Problems May Be Unrelated, But Ask Your Surgeon

You should be improving at this time. While your symptoms may be explained by the surgery that was performed, it also sounds like you might be having issues with your sinuses. Everything that you describe can be related to a sinus infection as well. I would suggest seeing your surgeon to make sure that there are no other issues or complications from your procedures.

Louis C. Cutolo, Jr., MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Give Yourself More Time & Take It Easy

Although it probably doesn't feel this way, 5 weeks is still rather early in the overall healing process. It's unlikely that you're experiencing anything overly concerning, but it's probably a good idea to check with your surgeon for peace of mind. In the meantime, slow down your activity level, as physical stress can worsen swelling and pain. Get plenty of rest and ask for help when you need it. I wish you luck with your recovery.

James N. Romanelli, MD, FACS
Long Island Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 23 reviews


Thank you for your question. It is unusual to experience so much discomfort after browlift. Sensory nerves to the scalp are disrupted however. You can expect gradual improvement!

Jonathan S. Jacobs, MD, DMD
Virginia Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Is it typical to be experiencing so much discomfort 5 weeks post op?

Pain and discomfort after a face lift is common but usually is resolved at 4-6 weeks. Most commonly there is continued discomfort in the neck particularly if a neck lift was performed with platysmaplasty (tightening of the neck muscles). Additionally, less common is pain associated with the sensory nerves that are near the areas addressed with the surgery. Scar tissue can form around these nerves and sometimes more pain is experienced. Sometimes the pain is relieved as the scars mature and remodel. If the pain persists and there is evidence of increased scar tissue sometimes a steroid injection to the area is beneficial. I would notify your surgeon, and sometimes patience and time is the most appropriate therapy.

Michael N. Desvigne, MD, FACS
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Facial discomfort

The good news is that you are only five weeks out, and, surgically speaking, still in the thick of the healing phase. You still have inflammation, swelling, and sensitivity in the areas which are healing. Without knowing more specifics of your case, the best I can tell you is that in most areas of the body which have similar symptoms only five weeks out after a major surgery, things typically get better as the weeks progress. Important thing is to visit with your plastic surgeon and get examined to make sure everything is healing within an acceptable timeframe. He or she can make certain you are lubricating your eyes sufficiently, can examine you for any other issues, and can maybe prescribe some adjunctive treatments to help lessen the symptoms as you naturally heal. Call your plastic surgeon and scheduled for follow-up.Best of luck!
Dr. Subbio
Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon
Newtown Square/Philadelphia, PA

Christian Subbio, MD
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Postop discomfort and dry eyes following facelift and browlift

Thank you for your question.  You are still early in the healing process.  It is not unusual to still be having some discomfort, especially near the end of the day.  However, your discomfort should be diminishing with each passing week.  If the discomfort is worsening, or failing to improve with time, you should discuss this with your surgeon.  The dry eye issue can certainly occur following a browlift.  It  will likely improve over time.  I would discuss this with your surgeon, and suggest lubricating the eyes intermittently through the day with natural tears, and at night with lubricating eye ointment.  I wish you the best in your recovery.

Michael Boggess, MD
Nashville Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Facelift/Browlift discomfort at 5 weeks postop

Yes it can be typical to experience discomfort at your 5 week post op visit. Everyone heals differently and mild discomfort at this point is expected. Make sure that you are following up with your surgeon so they can make sure that you are healing correctly. 

Michael T. Somenek, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

5 weeks out

Your symptoms seem worse than they should. Definitely, dry eyes should be followed closely.Nonetheless, the body has a tremendous ability to heal and I suspect you will be feeling better in the next few weeks. Keep close follow up with your surgeon and see how things go.

best of luck

Michael E. Kelly, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

A brow lift generally creates much more discomfort than a facelift.

It does sounds as though the inflammation associated with the brow lift is the main source of your discomfort. Treatment can only be symptomatic and will resolve with time. Make sure your surgeon is aware of your particular situation. May be able to adjust your pain medication.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.