"'Preserving ethnicity is the biggest concern of Asians having plastic surgery,' says Dr. Edmund Kwan" - Wall Street Journal

In Asia, Cosmetic Surgery originated from the work of cosmeticians in beauty parlors. Cosmetic Surgery and Plastic Surgery evolved in a parallel manner and only recently have the two fields converged and taken on a more scientific base.

Western culture has greatly influenced Asian society. The standard of beauty was redefined in favor of more Western features. However, as the Asian population in the United States continues to grow, the tide has turned. By 2007, the Selig Center for Economic Growth projects that the Asian American buying power for the U.S. will be $454.9 billion. . This accounts for the fastest increase in buying power from 1990-2007, at 287 percent. According to the recent Census, Asian Americans have a median income of $55,521 as compared to $42,148 for all races. With more expendable income, there has been a rise in demand for plastic and cosmetic surgery.

According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), the number of cosmetic procedures performed on minority patients during the last five years quadrupled to 1.3 million outpacing the overall increase by more than a third. Minority patients now account for nearly 19% of all the procedures performed in the U.S.

The desire to possess an eyelid fold or a well-shaped nose should not be misinterpreted as wanting to look Caucasian. While it is true that some Asians truly desire to look Caucasian, most want to retain their ethnic identity. Asian patients seeking Cosmetic Surgery want to improve their appearance with subtle, not drastic changes.