Cardiovascular Behavioral Medicine Research Program

Department of Psychiatry

University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

Director:  Karen A. Matthews, Ph.D.



CBM Research Training Program

SWAN Study

Faculty & Staff





For more than three decades, Dr. Matthews and her research group have investigated the psychosocial characteristics of individuals and their early life experiences that ultimately lead to coronary atherosclerosis and hypertension later in life.  They have focused on two stages of the life span when change in cardiovascular risk reliably occurs - adolescence and mid-life - because change provides an optimal setting for observing how hormonal and other biologic processes, social roles, and psychological characteristics interact to accelerate an individual's cardiovascular risk.  Their approach cannot rely on the methodologies and concepts from a single discipline or field because of the limitations of a single field and the nature of the scientific problem.  Dr. Matthews and her research group, thus, benefit from the knowledge and methods derived from psychology, psychiatry, epidemiology, and cardiology.


Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic       University of Pittsburgh     University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health     UPMC