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Unfortunately gas inside the eye is the best way to make sure the hole heals after surgery. Given your history, I agree that laying face down for such an extended period of time may not be an option for you.
One option that may work for you, however, is contacting a medical equipment rental shop. Many of them have chairs, tables etc that assist you in keeping your face down in the correct position.
Using oil for this surgery has more risks and really, in my opinion, doesn't work very well.
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