Unsightly yellow fatty deposits around the eyes and on eyelids might be a sign of cholesterol deposits in the arteries.
Too much cholesterol has been linked to heart attack.
A study published on the BMJ website showed patients with xanthelasmata were 48% more likely to have a heart attack.
Xanthelasmata, which are mostly made up of cholesterol, could be a sign of other fatty build-ups in the body.
Cardiologists said the findings could be used by doctors to help diagnose at-risk patients.