Pictured: Babak Mehrara

Babak J. Mehrara, MD

Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon

My Role at MSK

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Breast and Facial Reconstruction, Microsurgery, Lymphedema, Abdominal Wall Repair

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About Me

What I Do at MSK
  • Chief, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgical Service
  • Peter G. Cordeiro Endowed Chair in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Get To Know Me

I am a plastic surgeon dedicated to providing reconstructive surgery to patients with cancer.

I have special training in microsurgery, a type of procedure that transplants tissues from one part of the body to another by reconnecting small blood vessels using a microscope. I also have extensive experience in reconstruction performed with perforator flaps. This includes deep inferior epigastric artery perforator (DIEP) flap and gluteal artery perforator (GAP) flap surgery for breast reconstruction. DIEP flap surgery is the most common type of autologous breast reconstruction (reconstruction using your own tissue) and uses tissue from the abdomen to sculpt a new breast.

I have lectured nationally and internationally on breast reconstruction and have published extensively on the topic.

Read more

Perforator flaps are the latest and most advanced microsurgical techniques available for reconstruction. They improve on traditional microsurgery methods because with perforator flaps, there is much less trauma to the area from which the transplanted tissues are collected. For example, with the DIEP flap, we can preserve the rectus muscle (commonly known as the “six-pack” of the abdomen). In traditional microsurgery procedures, this muscle is cut, resulting in more pain, longer recovery, and a higher chance of hernias after surgery. In addition to microsurgery and reconstruction with perforator flaps, I have significant experience and interest in hernia repair and work closely with our colleagues in general surgery.

I also have expertise in using surgical and non-surgical options to care for people with cancer-related lymphedema. Lymphedema is a buildup of lymph fluid or fatty tissues under the skin that can cause swelling, pain, or discomfort. It develops in some people with cancer who have lymph nodes removed as part of their treatment.

Lymphedema is my primary research interest, and I have developed several models to study lymphedema in the laboratory, with the goal of understanding how it develops. My research group’s long-term goal is to design novel methods, including surgery and medical treatments, to better prevent and treat lymphedema. Depending on their circumstances and stage of lymphedema, I offer my patients liposuction, lymph node transplant, or lymphatic by-pass procedures. Our National Institutes of Health-funded laboratory at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center collaborates with researchers at across the United States to advance oncology’s understanding and management of lymphedema.

My Role at MSK

A plastic and reconstructive surgeon is a doctor with special training in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. These procedures restore function and appearance.

Areas of Expertise

My Specialties

  • Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Breast and Facial Reconstruction, Microsurgery, Lymphedema, Abdominal Wall Repair
Education & Honors

Education

  • MD, Columbia University

Residencies

  • General Surgery - New York University Medical Center
  • Plastic Surgery - New York University Medical Center

Awards and Honors

  • Castle Connolly: America’s Top Doctor (2024)
  • Top Doctors New York Metro Area, Castle Connolly (2023)
  • Castle Connolly: America's Top Doctors (2023)
  • Castle Connolly: New York Magazine Top Doctors (2010, 2013, 2016-2020)

Fellowships

  • Microsurgery - University of California Los Angeles Medical Center

Board Certifications

  • Plastic Surgery

Insurance Information

Understanding your insurance options is an important part of managing your cancer care. We have relationships with many common healthcare providers and plans.

Aetna

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, EPO PPO, POS, Transplant

Aetna Medicare Advantage (MTA retirees only)

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Blue Cross Blue Shield Federal Employee Program

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, PPO

Blue Cross Blue Shield New York

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO, HMO

Blue Cross Blue Shield states outside of NY/NJ

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, EPO PPO, POS

Blue Cross Health Plus

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Carrum Health

In Network Coverage Type
Supplemental

Cigna

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, HMO

MSK has a tentative agreement with Cigna to continue coverage in 2024.

Connecticare

In Network Coverage Type
POS, EPO, HMO

Emblem

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO, HMO

Emblem Essential

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Emblem Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO

Empire Blue Cross Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO, DSN

Empire Essential

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Empire Plan / NYSHIP (Blue Cross/UnitedHealthcare split plan)

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Fidelis

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, EPO

Fidelis Managed Medicaid & HARP

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Fidelis Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

First Health

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Healthfirst

In Network Coverage Type
EPO, HMO, PPO, POS

Healthfirst Managed Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Healthfirst Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
HMO, PPO

Healthsmart

In Network Coverage Type
PPO EPO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey (HMO)

In Network Coverage Type
HMO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey (PPO)

In Network Coverage Type
PPO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey Omnia Tier I (EPO)

In Network Coverage Type
EPO

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield New Jersey Omnia Tier II (EPO)

In Network Coverage Type
EPO

Horizon Medicare Advantage

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO

Husky CT Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Magnacare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO

Straight NJ Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Straight NY Medicaid

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Medicare Part A&B (traditional Medicare)

In Network Coverage Type
Federal Government

Multiplan/Beech Street/PHCS

In Network Coverage Type
Supplemental

MVP

In Network Coverage Type
PPO/OAP

Non-Participating Plans with Out of Network Benefits

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, EPO, HMO

NYC Medicare Advantage Plus for City Employees

In Network Coverage Type
TBD

Oscar

In Network Coverage Type
HMO/EPO

Oxford

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, EPO

World Trade Center Health Program (WTC)

In Network Coverage Type
State Government

Qualcare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, HMO

Tricare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, HMO

UMR

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS

United Healthcare

In Network Coverage Type
PPO, POS, HMO

Don't see your carrier or plan? We can help you understand your coverage.

If you don't have health insurance or are worried that your care may not be fully covered, our financial assistance programs may be able to help.

If you have questions about insurance, call us at 646-497-9176.

Make an Appointment

Current Patients

Request an appointment by logging on to MyMSK or calling your doctor’s office. If you aren’t registered for MyMSK, call 646-227-2593 for your Enrollment ID.

Contact and Location

Dr. Mehrara sees patients at two locations.

Office Phone
Location
New York, NY
West Harrison, NY

Looking to see a doctor at a different location? See all MSK locations.

Colleagues

Doctors at Memorial Sloan Kettering work as teams, with specialists from all different areas. This allows us to consider all your needs together, and to give you the best possible care.

See all Lymphedema doctors

See all Plastic and Reconstructive Surgical Service doctors

See all Surgery doctors

Clinical Trials

Smiling doctors in the lab
Find a Clinical Trial for You

Memorial Sloan Kettering's doctors and scientists are constantly developing new treatments for cancer. MSK is typically running hundreds of clinical trials at a given time.

You may be able to participate in a clinical trial even if you are new to MSK. Search our online directory to find trial information and see more about who can participate.

Search clinical trials

Research and Publications

View Dr. Mehrara's Lab

Pusic, AL, Cemal Y, Albornoz YC, Klassen A, CanoS, Sulimanoff I, Hernandez M, Massey M, Cordeiro P, Morrow M and Mehrara B. “Quality of life among breast cancer patients with lymphedema: a systematic review of patient-reported outcome instruments and outcomes.”  J Cancer Surviv 2013, 7(1): 83-92.

Avraham T, Zampell JC, Yan A, Elhadad S, Weitman ES, Rockson SG, Bromberg J and Mehrara BJ. “Th2 differentiation is necessary for soft tissue fibrosis and lymphatic dysfunction resulting from lymphedema.” FASEB J 2013; 27(3): 1114-1126.

Ho, A., P. Cordeiro, J. Disa, B. Mehrara, J. Wright, K. J. Van Zee, C. Hudis, A. McLane, J. Chou, Z. Zhang, S. Powell and B. McCormick (2012). “Long-term outcomes in breast cancer patients undergoing immediate 2-stage expander/implant reconstruction and postmastectomy radiation.” Cancer 2011, 118(9): 2552-2559.

Crisera, C. A., E. I. Chang, A. L. Da Lio, J. H. Festekjian and B. J. Mehrara (2011). “Immediate free flap reconstruction for advanced-stage breast cancer: is it safe?” Plast Reconstr Surg 2011: 128(1): 32-41.

Yan, A., T. Avraham, J. C. Zampell, S. Z. Aschen and B. J. Mehrara (2011). “Mechanisms of lymphatic regeneration after tissue transfer.” PLoS One 2011, 6(2): e17201.

Read more

McCarthy, C. M., A. F. Klassen, S. J. Cano, A. Scott, N. Vanlaeken, P. A. Lennox, A. K. Alderman, B. J. Mehrara, J. J. Disa, P. G. Cordeiro and A. L. Pusic (2010). “Patient satisfaction with postmastectomy breast reconstruction: a comparison of saline and silicone implants.” Cancer 2010, 116(24): 5584-5591.

Avraham, T., S. V. Daluvoy, E. R. Riedel, P. G. Cordeiro, K. J. Van Zee and B. J. Mehrara (2010). “Tissue expander breast reconstruction is not associated with an increased risk of lymphedema.” Ann Surg Oncol 2010, 17(11): 2926-2932.

Morrow, M. and B. Mehrara (2009). “Prophylactic mastectomy and the timing of breast reconstruction.” Br J Surg 2010, 96(1): 1-2.

Mehrara, B. J., J. C. Zampell, H. Suami and D. W. Chang (2011). “Surgical management of lymphedema: past, present, and future.” Lymphat Res Biol 2010, 9(3): 159-167.

Disa, J. J., C. M. McCarthy, B. J. Mehrara, A. L. Pusic, Q. Y. Hu and P. G. Cordeiro (2009). “Postmastectomy reconstruction: an approach to patient selection.” Plast Reconstr Surg 2009, 124(1): 43-52.

Avraham, T., N. Clavin and B. J. Mehrara (2008). “Microsurgical breast reconstruction.” Cancer J 2008, 14(4): 241-247.

Chen, C. M., E. G. Halvorson, J. J. Disa, C. McCarthy, Q. Y. Hu, A. L. Pusic, P. G. Cordeiro and B. J. Mehrara (2007). “Immediate postoperative complications in DIEP versus free/muscle-sparing TRAM flaps.” Plast Reconstr Surg 2007, 120(6): 1477-1482.

Mehrara, B. J., T. D. Santoro, E. Arcilla, J. P. Watson, W. W. Shaw and A. L. Da Lio (2006). “Complications after microvascular breast reconstruction: experience with 1195 flaps.” Plast Reconstr Surg 2006, 118(5): 1100-1109; discussion 1110-1101.

Selected Book Chapters
“Distraction osteogenis.” Mehrara BJ, Longaker MT, Mc Carthy JG, Hedrick MH, and Kawamoto H. In: The First International Baylor Orthodontic Symposium (Dallas, Texas). Sachdeva R, ed. Glendora, CA: Ormco; 1997.

 

Publications on PubMed

Visit PubMed for a full listing of Dr. Mehrara’s journal articles. Pubmed is an online index of research papers and other articles from the US National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

See all on PubMed

Disclosures

Doctors and faculty members often work with pharmaceutical, device, biotechnology, and life sciences companies, and other organizations outside of MSK, to find safe and effective cancer treatments, to improve patient care, and to educate the health care community.

MSK requires doctors and faculty members to report (“disclose”) the relationships and financial interests they have with external entities. As a commitment to transparency with our community, we make that information available to the public.

Babak J. Mehrara discloses the following relationships and financial interests:

  • Elsevier
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Mediflix, Inc.
    Professional Services and Activities
  • Pfizer, Inc.
    Professional Services and Activities (Uncompensated)
  • Puretech Health
    Intellectual Property Rights; Professional Services and Activities
  • Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
    Professional Services and Activities (Uncompensated)

If you’re a patient at MSK and would like more information about your doctor’s external relationships, please talk with your doctor.

The information published here is for a specific annual disclosure period. There may be differences between information on this and other public sites as a result of different reporting periods and/or the various ways relationships and financial interests are categorized by organizations that publish such data.


This page and data include information for a specific MSK annual disclosure period (January 1, 2022 through disclosure submission in spring 2023). This data reflects interests that may or may not still exist. This data is updated annually.

Learn more about MSK’s COI policies here. For questions regarding MSK’s COI-related policies and procedures, email MSK’s Compliance Office at [email protected].


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