Relationship between Vertical Glabellar Lines and the Supratrochlear and Supraorbital Arteries

Sebastian Cotofana, Michael Alfertshofer, Konstantin Frank, Vince Bertucci, Katie Beleznay, Andreas Nikolis, Jonathan Sykes, Arthur Swift, Nirusha Lachman, Thilo L. Schenck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: Glabellar soft tissue filler injections have been shown to be associated with a high risk of causing injection-related visual compromise. Objectives: The aim of this study was to identify the course of the superficial branch of the supratrochlear and of the deep branch of the supraorbital artery in relation to the ipsilateral vertical glabellar line and to test whether an artery is located deep to this line. Methods: Forty-one healthy volunteers with a mean age of 26.17 [9.6] years and a mean BMI of 23.09 [2.3] kg/m2 were analyzed. Ultrasound imaging was applied to measure the diameters, distance from skin surface, distance between the midline, distance between vertical glabella lines, and the cutaneous projection of the supratrochlear/supraorbital arteries at rest and upon frowning. Results: The mean distance between the superficial branch of the supratrochlear artery and the ipsilateral vertical glabellar line was 10.59 [4.0] mm in males and 8.21 [4.0] mm in females, whereas it was 22.38 [5.5] mm for the supraorbital artery in males and 20.73 [5.6] mm in females. Upon frowning, a medial shift in supratrochlear arterial position of 1.63 mm in males and 1.84 mm in females and of 3.9 mm in supraorbital arterial position for both genders was observed. The mean depth of the supratrochlear artery was 3.34 [0.6] mm at rest, whereas the depth of the supraorbital artery was 3.54 [0.8] mm. Conclusions: The hypothesis that injecting soft tissue fillers next to the vertical glabellar line is safe because the supratrochlear artery courses deep to the crease should be rejected. Additionally, the glabella and the supraorbital region should be considered as an area of mobile, rather than static, soft tissues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1341-1348
Number of pages8
JournalAesthetic surgery journal
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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