Photo of Bernard Travis Lee,  MD, MPH

Bernard Travis Lee, MD, MPH

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Phone: (617) 632-7835
Fax: (617) 632-7840

Bernard Travis Lee, MD, MPH

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center


  • Associate Professor, Surgery, Harvard Medical School
  • Chief, Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Surgery, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center


Research Abstract

As a plastic and reconstructive surgeon, my area of clinical innovation is in breast reconstruction after mastectomy. At BIDMC, we developed a program that uses a new microsurgical technique, the deep inferior epigastric perforator (DIEP) flap, to reconstruct a breast with abdominal skin and fat. Previous options sacrifice the rectus abdominis muscle and are associated with abdominal wall weakness and hernias. These perforator flaps provide the most natural type of reconstruction while minimizing morbidity. We are the first program in New England to focus on perforator flap reconstruction and have a robust educational program for the Harvard Plastic Surgery Residency Training Program as well as a breast reconstruction fellowship focusing on microsurgery at BIDMC.

My clinical research focuses on outcomes and satisfaction after breast reconstruction. We have branched out our research efforts to examine cost analysis, decision making, and patient education and understanding. This has led us to examine the topic of health literacy, especially in cancer patients. My basic science research focuses on utilizing near infrared fluorescence imaging systems to evaluate perfusion in cancer surgery. This project is funded by multiple NIH R01 grants and incorporates a translational trial for reconstructive breast surgery. We were also recently awarded an NIH R01 grant to examine perfusion in face transplantation models.


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  • Hahamoff M, Gupta N, Munoz D, Lee BT, Clevenger P, Shaw C, Spiguel L, Singhal D. A lymphedema surveillance program for breast cancer patients reveals the promise of surgical prevention. J Surg Res 2018. PubMed
  • Tran BNN, Ruan QZ, Epstein S, Ricci JA, Rudd RE, Lee BT. Literacy analysis of National Comprehensive Cancer Network patient guidelines for the most common malignancies in the United States. Cancer 2017. PubMed
  • Lee BT, Agarwal JP, Ascherman JA, Caterson SA, Gray DD, Hollenbeck ST, Khan SA, Loeding LD, Mahabir RC, Miller AS, Perdikis G, Schwartz JS, Sieling BA, Thoma A, Wolfman JA, Wright JL. Evidence-Based Clinical Practice Guideline: Autologous Breast Reconstruction with DIEP or Pedicled TRAM Abdominal Flaps. Plast Reconstr Surg 2017; 140:651e-664e. PubMed
  • Ricci JA, Epstein S, Momoh AO, Lin SJ, Singhal D, Lee BT. A meta-analysis of implant-based breast reconstruction and timing of adjuvant radiation therapy. J Surg Res 2017; 218:108-116. PubMed
  • Koolen PGL, Matos TR, Ibrahim AMS, Sun J, Lee BT, Frankenthaler RA, Lin SJ. Recurrence Rates Over 20 Years in the Treatment of Malignant Melanoma: Immediate Versus Delayed Reconstruction. Plast Reconstr Surg Glob Open 2017; 5:e1378. PubMed
  • Tran BNN, Singh M, Singhal D, Rudd R, Lee BT. Readability, complexity, and suitability of online resources for mastectomy and lumpectomy. J Surg Res 2017; 212:214-221. PubMed
  • van Paridon MW, Kamali P, Paul MA, Wu W, Ibrahim AMS, Kansal KJ, Houlihan MJ, Morris DJ, Lee BT, Lin SJ, Sharma R. Oncoplastic breast surgery: Achieving oncological and aesthetic outcomes. J Surg Oncol 2017. PubMed
  • Wada H, Vargas CR, Angelo J, Faulkner-Jones B, Paul MA, Ho OA, Lee BT, Frangioni JV. Accurate Prediction of Tissue Viability at Postoperative Day 7 Using Only Two Intraoperative Subsecond Near-Infrared Fluorescence Images. Plast Reconstr Surg 2017; 139:354-363. PubMed
  • Kamali P, Paul MA, Ibrahim AM, Koolen PG, Wu W, Schermerhorn ML, Lee BT, Lin SJ. National and Regional Differences in 32,248 Postmastectomy Autologous Breast Reconstruction Using the Updated National Inpatient Survey. Ann Plast Surg 2017. PubMed
  • Weiss KD, Vargas CR, Ho OA, Chuang DJ, Weiss J, Lee BT. Readability analysis of online resources related to lung cancer. J Surg Res 2016; 206:90-97. PubMed
  • Vargas CR, DePry J, Lee BT, Bordeaux JS. The Readability of Online Patient Information About Mohs Micrographic Surgery. Dermatol Surg 2016; 42:1135-41. PubMed
  • Kamali P, Koolen PG, Ibrahim AM, Paul MA, Dikmans RE, Schermerhorn ML, Lee BT, Lin SJ. Analyzing Regional Differences over a 15-Year Trend of One-Stage versus Two-Stage Breast Reconstruction in 941,191 Postmastectomy Patients. Plast Reconstr Surg 2016; 138:1e-14e. PubMed
  • Vargas CR, Koolen PG, Ho OA, Tobias AM, Lin SJ, Lee BT. Preoperative CT-angiography in autologous breast reconstruction. Microsurgery 2016. PubMed
  • Seth AK, Vargas CR, Chuang DJ, Lee BT. Readability Assessment of Patient Information about Lymphedema and Its Treatment. Plast Reconstr Surg 2016; 137:287e-295e. PubMed
  • Ibrahim AM, Vargas CR, Koolen PG, Chuang DJ, Lin SJ, Lee BT. Readability of online patient resources for melanoma. Melanoma Res 2016; 26:58-65. PubMed
  • de Blacam C, Ogunleye AA, Momoh AO, Colakoglu S, Tobias AM, Sharma R, Houlihan MJ, Lee BT. High body mass index and smoking predict morbidity in breast cancer surgery: a multivariate analysis of 26,988 patients from the national surgical quality improvement program database. Ann Surg 2012; 255:551-5. PubMed