Eyelid Surgery -Post Op Instructions

By: Dr. Jose Rodriguez


Once your surgery is completed, you must follow all the instructions given to you in order to heal properly and have good outcomes. Use this as a checklist of progress as you heal. Included are normal post-surgical experiences and key health considerations that may be a cause of concern.


Typical symptoms of eyelid surgery and signs to watch for include:

Bruising and swelling in the eyelid region is a normal experience as the skin, tissues and sensory nerves heal. Pain medication will help you cope with any discomfort. Consistent sharp pain should be reported to our office immediately.

Asymmetry, the eyes look different, or heal differently. The eyes may look or feel quite different from one another in the days following surgery. This is normal; no two eyes in nature or following surgery are perfectly symmetrical.


• A high fever, (over 101º) severe nausea and vomiting, continued dizziness or incoherent behavior, such as hallucinations.

• Any pain that cannot be controlled by your pain medication.

• Bright red skin that is hot to the touch.

• Excessive bleeding or fluid seeping through the incisions.

• A severely misshapen eyelid or excessive bruising or fluid retention that is localized to one region.

• Tightness in eyelid region and difficulty closing your eyes

• Blurry vision, dry eye, burning, watery or itchy eyes.

To alleviate any discomfort, and to reduce swelling, you may apply cool (not cold) compresses to your eyes. Do not apply ice or anything frozen directly on the skin. Do not apply compresses to your cheeks. Soak soft plain white washcloths or gauze squares in ice water and wring out well. Apply directly to the eyelids, but do not apply any pressure. Apply cool compresses, for no longer than 20-minute intervals.


• Rest, but not bed rest: While rest is important in the early stages of healing, equally important is that you are ambulatory: meaning that you are walking under your own strength. Do not engage in any stressful activities.

• Recline, do not lie down: This will be more comfortable for you, and can reduce swelling. Always keep your head elevated.

• Do not stress or strain your eyes: Do not wear contact lenses. Avoid bright light. Wear dark lens, large frame sunglasses if you must be outdoors or in any bright light.

• Good nutrition: Fluids are critical following surgery. Stick to non-carbonated, non-alcoholic, caffeine-free and green tea-free beverages including fruit juices and water, milk and yogurt drinks. You must consume at least 8 ounces of fluid every 2 hours. Stick with soft, bland, nutritious food for the first 24 hours.

• Take all oral medication, exactly as prescribed. For less severe pain, you can take over-the-counter Tylenol (acetaminophen).

• Use Tobradex eye drops. Use 3 drops in each eye, 3 times per day for the first 5 days.

• Apply Refresh P.M. ointment (purchased separately, available over the counter) inside the eyelid every night at bedtime. This will make your vision blurry, but it will clear as the ointment is absorbed.

• Use Refresh Plus drops (available over the counter) in both eyes every 1-2 hours

• Keep your incisions clean. Your incisions will seep fluid and some blood for a short time after surgery. Do not remove any crusting near your stitches.

• Do not smoke. Smoking can greatly impair your safety prior to surgery and your ability to heal following surgery. You must not smoke.

• You may shower 48 hours after surgery. Take a warm, not hot shower. Do not rub your incisions.

• Do not use any glycolic, retinoid or other potentially irritating skincare products near your eyes or on your face.

• Your appearance will change with age. Your eye and facial appearance may change too. Contact our office with any of your questions or concerns, at any time.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.