Why Is South Korea Fast Becoming a Choice Destination for Medical Tourism?

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K-pop and K-drama aren’t the only reasons South Korea is dominating cultures worldwide. The country is ranked third (32.5%) in the favorite destinations of international medical tourists. It sits behind the United States (39%) and Germany (33.6%). But how did a previously war-torn country do this? Wasn’t it just 70 years ago when both North and South Korea suffered tremendously from war? How was South Korea able to brush that off and become a global superpower in tourism, economics, medicine, and technology?

Thank South Korea if you’ve had an effective thread neck lift in Orange County or other regions. The country popularized minimally invasive procedures for the face, neck, and jowls. Although it doesn’t last as long as invasive facelift surgery, a thread neck lift can last from one to three years. It is also cheaper and more natural-looking than facelift surgery.

Why South Korea?

South Korea’s popularity is still largely dependent on its entertainment industry. K-pop and K-drama brought South Korea to people’s consciousness. In the past, people would go to Paris or New York for some culturally riveting activities. But not today. Korea’s K-drama industry is so influential that tour companies offer to bring you around the sets of popular television series and movies.

The medical industry is booming in South Korea that there are as many hospitals as there are coffee shops in the popular Gangnam area in Seoul. South Korea received incredible support from its private sector. Multinational IT companies such as Samsung, LG, and Hyundai develop medical equipment for South Korean hospitals. In fact, there are many hospitals in South Korea where a robot performs minor surgeries.

The survival rate for cancer surgery in South Korea is also higher than in the Americas and Europe. For example, thyroid cancer has a survival rate of 98.1% and cervical cancer at 76.8%. It is also first in the liver transplant success rate at 96%. It is so successful in these endeavors that it also exceeded the U.S. in cardiovascular and spinal disorder treatments.

As the Plastic Surgery Capital of the World

plastic surgery concept

In 2018, South Korea recorded the highest rate of plastic surgeries per capita in the world. There are nearly one million procedures done in the country, making it the world’s plastic surgery capital. Surveys show that one-third of South Korean women aged 19 to 29 years old have had plastic surgery. Others say that the percentage could be higher—that’s it in the 50% range.

The most common cosmetic surgery done in South Korea includes three: blepharoplasty or double-eyelid surgery, rhinoplasty or the nose job, and glutathione injections. The double-eyelid surgery is meant to make the eyes look bigger, while the nose job will make the bridges slimmer. Glutathione injections aim to slow the pigmentation of the skin, which will result in fairer and paler skin.

But according to the country’s culture experts, the notion that South Koreans want to look more Western is wrong. South Koreans want to be beautiful Asians, and not Caucasians. Even their lightening of the skin isn’t something they get from Westerners. Pale skin is a standard of beauty not only in the West but in Asia as well.

Whether you’re getting treatment for cancer or want to have a nose job, South Korea is looking like the best place for a procedure. It is cheaper. It uses more advanced technology. On top of it all, it has a high success rate.

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