Plastic surgery is becoming an increasingly popular treatment for Asian-American patients in the United States, and the Austin area is no exception.
Plastic surgery, which is considered cosmetic surgery, is often considered more advanced and less invasive than skin reconstructive surgery, and is often offered by clinics in Asian communities.
This means that Asian-Americans are often eligible to have cosmetic procedures performed at Asian-owned and operated plastic surgeons, but there is a stigma attached to the procedure.
The Asian-Owned Plastic Surgery Association is an umbrella organization that represents more than 2,500 Asian-operated plastic surgeons and centers across the country.
“There are some people that are scared of plastic surgery because they are Asian,” said Amy Lee, a member of the association.
“Some of us may not even be aware of how much Asian people are getting this, and we don’t feel comfortable coming out because of that.
So that stigma can make us feel like we have to stay in the closet or feel like it’s a crime to talk about our experience with cosmetic surgery.”
The association, which recently released a report detailing the experiences of Asian-Pacific Islander and Asian-origin American patients, said it is “unfortunate that the public has this negative image” of plastic surgeons.
“It is really important to educate the public about how these procedures are done and to be open about the risks and the benefits of these procedures,” said Lee.
Lee said that many Asian-oriented plastic surgeons are hesitant to share their experiences because they may have to deal with backlash from fellow patients.
“Many of these surgeons feel a bit uncomfortable talking about this because of the negative perception that they may face,” she said.
“They feel like they are going to be labeled racist or that they are racist if they do.”
In order to gain access to a cosmetic surgery center, Asian patients need to apply for a “medical card” that allows them to obtain surgery from a doctor in their community.
Lee and her co-founder, Kimberly Lee, said the majority of patients who come to them for surgery are from Southeast Asian countries.
“Most of them are coming from countries that have high rates of violence and violence against women,” Lee said.
The most common reasons why patients seek plastic surgery are because they want surgery to reduce their waistlines, increase their waist size, or for cosmetic surgery.
“If they want to change their appearance, they want cosmetic surgery,” said Kimberly Lee.
“We don’t want to do it to just look good.”
The Association of Asian Pacific American Physicians, an umbrella group of Asian health care providers, said that Asian patients are typically more likely to have a skin condition that is a problem for them than Caucasian patients.
“Often the Asian patients who are eligible for plastic surgery don’t have the financial means to get the procedures,” Lee added. “
The Association for Asian Pacific Americans also said that patients who have insurance are at risk of not getting cosmetic surgery because insurance companies won’t cover the costs associated with the procedure, and because the majority are not eligible for financial assistance for their cosmetic surgery plans. “
Often the Asian patients who are eligible for plastic surgery don’t have the financial means to get the procedures,” Lee added.
The Association for Asian Pacific Americans also said that patients who have insurance are at risk of not getting cosmetic surgery because insurance companies won’t cover the costs associated with the procedure, and because the majority are not eligible for financial assistance for their cosmetic surgery plans.
“This is a huge barrier for Asian patients because we don�t have financial help to pay for the cost of the surgery,” Lee explained.
“So we end up paying a lot more than we would for a cosmetic operation.
It’s just really frustrating.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.