What Are the Risks Of An Eye Injection?
As with any procedure, it is important to know and understand the risk factors associated with intravitreal injections. Although severe complications are uncommon, the major risks to intravitreal injections include:
- Infection in the eye (endophthalmitis)
- Inflammation in the eye (uveitis)
- Vitreous hemorrhage – bleeding into the vitreous gel
- Retinal detachments
Of these adverse events, infection in the eye is the most serious. Symptoms of an infection include worsening pain and vision 1-7 days after an injection. Thankfully, the risk of infection from an eye injection is less than one in 5,000 procedures. In the event of an infection, a patient will receive additional injections of broad-spectrum antibiotics and sometimes surgery to prevent further damage to the eye.
The surface of the eye may also show signs of bleeding at the injection site where the needle enters the eye. This is known as subconjunctival hemorrhage. This side effect will typically go away without intervention within a week. Intraocular pressure may temporarily rise in the eye after an injection is completed. This intraocular pressure will be monitored in the office using a pressure-measurement device until the pressure normalizes.