Area of Interest
My research interests focus on cancer screening and the application of linked cancer outcomes and Medicare/administrative data to assess patterns and outcomes of care. I am particularly interested in breast cancer screening and the performance of imaging technologies, comparative effectiveness research, and disparities in cancer screening and treatment. My prior work includes utilizing mammography claims data and national colorectal cancer screening data among the Medicare population, examining treatment for intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma using SEER/Medicare data, and assessing liver cancer screening among a cohort of Veterans from a national Hepatitis C registry.
As Director of the Carolina Mammography Registry (CMR), a prospective population based registry of breast imaging data linked with pathology, cancer registry, and Medicare claims data, my current work includes studying mammography performance among older women and examining the role of technologists in mammography performance. Previously, CMR has been used to study mammography performance, practice patterns, and breast cancer outcomes in North Carolina, as well as nationally as part of the Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium (BCSC).
Currently I am involved in several projects that utilize cancer screening and outcome data linked with Medicare claims data. The first of these is in conjunction with the BCSC as part of an ARRA funded grant to conduct comparative effectiveness research on breast cancer imaging modalities. The goals of this study are to monitor trends and compare the downstream healthcare use and costs subsequent to screening mammography for film-screen versus digital mammography among Medicare women. The second study is part of the UNC Cancer DEcIDE project, funded through AHRQ. This work involves using data from the National Oncologic PET Registry linked to Medicare claims data to compare management strategies subsequent to PET between the two data sources.
News and Stories
Study finds that accurate diagnostic mammography outcomes vary by racial and ethnic groups
A study by Sarah J. Nyante, PhD, MSPH, and colleagues found that the rate of diagnostic accuracy is highest in non‐Hispanic white women and lowest in Hispanic women.
Southeastern cancer centers fight racial inequities in lung cancer
A grant from Stand Up To Cancer will establish sustainable infrastructure to improve screening, diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer in the Black community.
New lung cancer screening recommendation expands access but may not address inequities
The editorial, published in JAMA, comes after the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force’s newly released recommendation to expand eligibility for annual lung cancer screening with low-dose computed tomography.
Henderson, Rivera awarded $1.5 million lung cancer screening study grant
Louise Henderson, PhD, M. Patricia Rivera, MD, ATSF, and a multi-disciplinary team will study comorbidity and functional status in a population undergoing lung cancer screening.