Women's Health

“What excites me most about our work is the chance to answer questions and develop evidence that is helpful to patients—that includes before, during, and after pregnancy, and through menopause and aging.”

Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD
Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute Senior Investigator 
Physician, Washington Permanente Medical Group, Internal Medicine

Research overview

Women make up half of the world’s population, but for many years, much health research has focused on men. Women face unique health choices about birth control and pregnancy, cancer screening, preventing osteoporosis, and treating menopause symptoms. For many years, studies of new drugs have systematically excluded pregnant individuals, so when a drug is approved, little is known about its potential impact on a pregnancy or fetus. Studies by Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute (KPWHRI) investigators are helping women make the best decisions for a healthy pregnancy and a long and healthy life.

In addition to studying “equal-opportunity” conditions such as heart disease, which are common in many people, prior and current areas of study for Kaiser Permanente Washington investigators include:

An advantage of doing this research at KPWHRI is the large, diverse patient population available through connections to Kaiser Permanente Washington and collaborating research partners across the country. KPWHRI studies include participants of all racial and ethnic backgrounds, ages, genders, educational levels, and socioeconomic status.

“We work with big populations that resemble the real world,” says Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD, KPWHRI senior investigator. “And one reason I love doing research at Kaiser Permanente is that when we get data on how to make our patients’ health better, that research can help make clinical decisions and the clinical decisions then influence our research.”

Recent publications on Women's Health

Callegari LS, Tartaglione EV, Magnusson SL, Nelson KM, Arterburn DE, Szarka J, Zephyrin L, Borrero S. Understanding women veterans' family planning counseling experiences and preferences to inform patient-centered care. Womens Health Issues. 2019 May - Jun;29(3):283-289. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2019.03.002. Epub 2019 Apr 10. PubMed

Tice JA, Bissell MCS, Miglioretti DL, Gard CC, Rauscher GH, Dabbous FM, Kerlikowske K. Validation of the breast cancer surveillance consortium model of breast cancer risk. Breast Cancer Res Treat.2019 Jun;175(2):519-523. doi: 10.1007/s10549-019-05167-2. Epub 2019 Feb 22. PubMed

Takemoto M, Schechtman M, Villa N, Talavera G, Sears DD, Owen N, Rosenberg DE, Dunstan D, Allison M, Kerr J. Arriba por la vida Estudio (AVE): study protocol for a standing intervention targeting postmenopausal Latinas. Contemp Clin Trials. 2019 Apr;79:66-72. doi: 10.1016/j.cct.2019.02.004. Epub 2019 Feb 13. PubMed

Pocobelli G, Dublin S. In Reply. Obstet Gynecol. 2019;133(2):383-384. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000003094. PubMed

Arasu VA, Miglioretti DL, Sprague BL, Alsheik NH, Buist DSM, Henderson LM, Herschorn SD, Lee JM, Onega T, Rauscher GH, Wernli KJ, Lehman CD, Kerlikowske K. Population-based assessment of the association between magnetic resonance imaging background parenchymal enhancement and future primary breast cancer risk. J Clin Oncol. 2019 Apr 20;37(12):954-963. doi: 10.1200/JCO.18.00378. Epub 2019 Jan 9. PubMed

Researchers in Women's Health

Diana S. Buist, PhD, MPH

Director of Research and Strategic Partnerships; Senior Investigator
206-287-2931
Diana.S.Buist@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Sascha Dublin, MD, PhD

Senior Investigator
206-287-2870
Sascha.Dublin@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Laura Harrington, PhD, MPH

Assistant Investigator
206-287-2066
Laura.B.Harrington@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Karen Wernli, PhD

Associate Investigator
206-287-2934
Karen.J.Wernli@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Erin J. Bowles, MPH

Research Associate
206-287-2708
Erin.A.Bowles@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Laura E. Ichikawa, MS

Biostatistician III
206-287-2395
Laura.E.Ichikawa@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Jennifer F. Bobb, PhD

Associate Investigator
206-287-2190
Jennifer.F.Bobb@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Gaia Pocobelli, PhD

Research Associate
206-287-2914
Gaia.S.Pocobelli@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Ellen O'Meara, PhD

Research Associate
206-287-2938
Ellen.S.O'Meara@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Paige D. Wartko, PhD, MPH

Research Associate
206-442-5230
Paige.D.Wartko@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Mary A. Akosile, MS, MPH

Biostatistician I
206-287-2893
Mary.A.Akosile@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Denise M. Boudreau, PhD

Senior Investigator
206-287-2067
Denise.M.Boudreau@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Aruna Kamineni, PhD, MPH

Assistant Investigator
206-287-2922
Aruna.S.Kamineni@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Susan M. Shortreed, PhD

Senior Investigator
206-287-2088
Susan.M.Shortreed@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Onchee Yu, MS

Biostatistician III
206-287-2389
Onchee.Yu@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Weiwei Zhu, MS

Biostatistician III
206-442-5215
Weiwei.Zhu@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Karen J. Sherman, PhD

Senior Investigator
206-287-2426
Karen.J.Sherman@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Katherine M. Newton, PhD

Senior Investigator (Emeritus)
206-287-2973
Katherine.M.Newton@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Yu-Ru Su, PhD

Assistant Investigator
206-287-2948
yuru.su@kp.org

Curriculum vitae (CV)

Affiliate researchers

Amy Bonomi, PhD, MPH
Professor and Chair, Human Development and Family Studies
Michigan State University

Susan D. Reed, MD, MPH
Harborview Medical Center; UW Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Rachel Winer, PhD, MPH
Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology
University of Washington