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The Risks & Complications of Under Eye Filler

Karli Plunkett, DMSc, PA-C, LME

July 31, 2023

3 min read

As stress stacks up, many of us start to see our under eyes sag down. Non-surgical procedures like under-eye filler injections are gaining popularity and helping patients rejuvenate their look. Filler in the tear trough area can alleviate under-eye hollows and puffiness, providing a youthful, refreshed appearance. However, as with any procedure, they come with inherent risks and complications, some of which can be severe.

Undereye and Tear Trough Filler Risks

Under-eye fillers involve injecting a gel-like substance, typically made of hyaluronic acid, into the tear troughs to minimize the appearance of dark circles, bags, or hollowing. While these treatments are generally safe when administered by a trained, licensed professional, there's a risk of complications, including infection, bruising, swelling, asymmetry, lumpiness, and an allergic reaction to the filler.


A more serious, albeit less common, risk is vascular occlusion, where the filler blocks a blood vessel. This blockage can lead to skin necrosis (death of skin cells) and, in rare cases, blindness. It is important to note that this risk, though rare, is amplified when the procedure is conducted by an unqualified individual.

The Risks of Amateur Treatments

With the rise of social media and the pursuit of beauty, 'injection parties' have become a trend. These gatherings, where under-eye fillers and other injectables are administered outside a professional setting, typically by unlicensed individuals, pose significant health risks. Unsanitary conditions increase the chance of infection, while a lack of professional training exacerbates the risk of incorrect placement or overuse of filler, potentially leading to occlusion.


Furthermore, unqualified injectors might not have a solid understanding of facial anatomy or the ability to handle complications, causing irreversible damage. Aesthetic treatments should always be performed by a licensed professional in a controlled setting to minimize risks and ensure patient safety.

Use of Hyaluronidase in Filler Treatments

For those concerned about the risks associated with under-eye fillers, several alternatives are available.


One option is fat grafting, which involves harvesting fat from one part of the body and injecting it into the under-eye area. While this provides a more permanent solution than fillers, it carries additional risks, such as fat embolism, a potentially life-threatening condition.


Laser resurfacing is another option. This treatment stimulates collagen production to rejuvenate the skin but can lead to burns, scarring, changes in skin color, and a very rare risk of blindness if the laser is used incorrectly.


Topical treatments, such as retinol and vitamin C serums, are less invasive options. These work by boosting collagen production to improve skin texture and tone over time. However, they may cause skin irritation, and the results are often more subtle and take longer to appear than fillers.

What to Consider Before Booking

While under-eye fillers can effectively improve under-eye hollows and puffiness, they carry potential risks and complications. The risks can be minimized by seeking treatment from a licensed professional and avoiding dangerous trends like 'injection parties.' For those who prefer to avoid these risks entirely, alternatives such as fat grafting, laser resurfacing, or topical treatments exist, though these come with their own set of potential complications.


If you are looking for under eye filler near me in Orlando, Nectar Aesthetics is your destination for cautious, natural-looking procedures.

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