Facial plast Surg 2010; 26(2): 063-068
DOI: 10.1055/s-0030-1253505
© Thieme Medical Publishers

Race and Ethnicity in Nasal Plastic Surgery: A Need for Science

S.C. Leong1 , Ronald Eccles1
  • 1Common Cold Centre and Healthcare Clinical Trials, Cardiff School of Biosciences, Cardiff University, United Kingdom
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Publication History

Publication Date:
04 May 2010 (online)


Race and ethnicity have no scientific or anthropologic validity, yet nasal plastic surgeons continue to categorize patient demographic variables according to racial and ethnic lines. The aim of this article is to discuss the problems of using race and ethnicity as demographic variables in nasal surgery. It is important to define the population demographics in any surgical study, but race and ethnicity are categories without any scientific basis. The nasal index or other anthropometric objective measures of the external nose may be used as discriminators of variation for studies in rhinology, but more studies are required to define their clinical relevance and usefulness in plastic surgery. The article critically examines the use of racial/ethnic categories and anthropometric measurements in nasal plastic surgery.