What happens after surgery?

October 30, 2019

The nurses may check your eyes and sight frequently after your operation.Before you go home you may have an x-ray to check the
position of your repaired cheekbone.

The area we operated on is likely to be sore so we will give you painkillers to ease the pain. The discomfort is usually worse for the first few days and it may take a couple of weeks to go away completely.

Although cheekbone fractures usually heal without infection, we may need to give you antibiotics, particularly if we have used a mesh or implant.

At first we may need to give you antibiotics through a vein in your arm (intravenously) while you are in hospital. We will also give you painkillers and a course of antibiotics to take at home.

You will have some swelling and bruising around your eyelids.

Sometimes the whites of your eyes will become bruised and look red. You will see these changes most in the first 24 hours after surgery and they will have gone down a lot by the end of the second week.

You can help to reduce the swelling and bruising by using a cold compress, such as an ice pack wrapped in a cloth or a towel, and sleeping propped upright for the first few nights after surgery.

It takes about six weeks for your cheekbone to heal completely. During this time you must be careful not to injure this side of your face because it may push the bones out of place again.

You should also avoid blowing your nose on the side of the fracture for a month after surgery because this can cause swelling in and around your eye.

It is important to keep any stitches or dressings dry until they are removed.

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Nicholas Lee: Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeon, Sheffield UK