Dr. BrettD.Thombs, PhD
Associate Professor

Behavioural medicine
Health psychology
Evidence review

Jewish General Hospital
4333 Cote Ste-Catherine Road
H3T 1E4
514-340-8222 ext. 5112


Dr. Thombs is an investigator in the Division of Psychiatry Research and an Associate Member of the Centre for Clinical Epidemiology and Community Studies, and the Department of Medicine at the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Jewish General Hospital. He is Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Associate Member of the Department of Medicine, the Departments of Epidemiology, Biostatistics, and Occupational Health, and the School of Nursing of McGill University. Dr. Thombs is internationally known for his work on behavioral health psychology, which focuses on the illness experience of patients, including the etiology, assessment, and treatment of interrelated somatic and psychological symptoms that are common in medical illness, particularly cardiovascular and rheumatic diseases. An important part of his work involves the evaluation of behavioural health services, such as detection and treatment of depression, as well as methods of research reporting. Dr. Thombs has authored more than 110 peer-reviewed articles, many of them in top medical journals, has served as a peer-reviewer for over 40 journals, is on the editorial boards of five journals, and serves as an associate editor and statistical editor. Dr. Thombs is the principal investigator or a co-investigator on several grants from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Fonds de la recherche en santé Québec (FRSQ). He has been awarded a New Investigator Award from the CIHR (2008-2013), a Chercheurs-boursiers, Junior I award from the FRSQ (2008-2012), an American College of Rheumatology Research and Education Foundation Health Professional Investigator Award, the Canadian Psychological Association’s President’s New Researcher Award, the Canadian Psychological Association Health Psychology Section Early Career Award, and the 2010 Jewish General Hospital Award for Excellence in Psychosocial or Clinical Research. Dr. Thombs was the lead author of an international team that published an article in JAMA about depression screening in cardiovascular care settings, which was a finalist for the 2009 BMJ Group Research Paper of the Year Award.

Graduate: PhD, Fordham University
Postdoctoral Fellowship: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Clinical Psychology Internship: Weill Cornell Medical College

Society of Behavioral Medicine
Canadian Psychological Association

Thombs BD, Coyne JC, Cuijpers P, de Jonge P, Gilbody S, Ioannidis JPA, Johnson BT, Patten SB, Turner EH, Ziegelstein RC. Rethinking recommendations for depression screening in primary care. Canadian Medical Association Journal. In press.

Thombs BD, Arthurs E, El-Baalbaki G, Meijer A, Ziegelstein RC, Steele RJ. Risk of bias from inclusion of patients who already have diagnosis of or are undergoing treatment for depression indiagnostic accuracy studies of screening tools for depression: systematic review. BMJ. 2011;343:d4825.

Meijer A, Roseman M, Milette K, Coyne JC, Stefanek M, Ziegelstein RC, Arthurs E, Leavens A, Palmer SC, Stewart DE, De Jonge P, Thombs BD. Depression screening and patient outcomes in cancer: A systematic review. PLoS ONE. 2011; 6(11): e27181.

Roseman M, Milette K, Bero LA, Lexchin J,Turner E, Coyne JC, Thombs BD. Reporting of conflicts of interest in meta-analyses of pharmacological treatments. JAMA. 2011;305(10):1008-1017.

Thombs BD, Ziegelstein RC, de Jonge P, Grace SL, Pilote L, Dozois DJA, Beck AT, Fuss S, Stewart DE, Ormel J, Dobson KS, Abbey SE. Somatic symptom overlap in Beck Depression Inventory-II Scores following myocardial infarction. British Journal of Psychiatry. 2010;197(1):61-66.

Thombs BD, de Jonge P, Coyne JC, Whooley MA, Frasure-Smith N, Mitchell AJ, Zuidersma M, Eze-Nliam C, Bezerra B, Smith CG, Soderlund K, Ziegelstein RC.Depression screening and patient outcomes in cardiovascular care: A systematic review. JAMA. 2008;300(18):2161-2171.