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Welcome to the Thombs Research Team Website!

Dr. Brett Thombs is a Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University, a Senior Investigator at the Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research at the Jewish General Hospital, Chair of the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care and Director of the Scleroderma Patient-centered Intervention Network (SPIN) and Director of the DEPRESsion Screening Data (DEPRESSD) Project.

Members of the Thombs Research Team work in three projects or areas: (1) SPIN, (2) the DEPRESSD Project, and (3) meta research and policy, which includes the Canadian Task Force on Preventive Health Care (CTFPHC), the development of an extension of the CONsolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) statement for trials conducted in cohorts and other routinely collected data, and other meta-research projects.

Each project group includes research coordinators, research assistants, postdoctoral fellows, graduate and undergraduate students who collaboratively work on various aspects of the projects. Check out the individual project sections to learn more about each project team and our current team members.

Latest News...


Congratulations to Dipika and the DEPRESSD team on their publication in the IJMPR!  | 2021/05/12

We are happy to share that the DEPRESSD Team's study on selective cutoff reporting in depression screening studies was published in the International Journal of Methods in Psychiatric Research (IJMPR). This study, led by Dipika Neupane, compared selective cutoff reporting in the PHQ-9 and EPDS. The study highlights the importance of reporting accuracy estimates or contingency tables for all relevant cutoffs. Congratulations to Dipika and the rest of the DEPRESSD Team! Read more here.

DEPRESSD Team's meta-analysis on the accuracy of the HADS-D screening tool published in the BMJ  | 2021/05/10

We are excited to share that the DEPRESSD Team's IPDMA on the accuracy of the HADS-D screening tool has been published in the BMJ. The project, led by Dr. Yin Wu, combined individual participant data from 101 studies (>25,000 participants) to evaluate the screening accuracy of the HADS-D. Combined sensitivity and specificity of the HADS-D was maximized at a cut-off of >=7. Accuracy was similar across reference standards and subgroups, and when published results from studies that did not contribute data were included. Read the full article: here  Clinicians and researchers who consider screening for depression with the HADS-D can refer to our associated knowledge translation tool which estimates the expected number of positive screens as well as true and false screening outcomes for different screening thresholds.

SPIN-CHAT results featured in Actualités UQÀM press release  | 2021/05/05

Actualités UQAM, the Université de Québec à Montréal's (UQÀM) news bulletin, published a press release, entitled " Groupes de soutien par visioconférence" (which translates to "Videoconferenced-based support groups"). The article featured professional educator Dr. Ghassan El-Baalbaki's and scleroderma support group facilitator Violet Konrad's comments on the effectiveness of the SPIN-CHAT (COVID-19 Home-isolation Activities Together) Program in providing scleroderma participants with psychosocial tools and group activities to maintain mental health and break isolation during the pandemic. Read the article (available in French only) here.

SPIN publishes protocol for living systematic review on non-pharmacological and non-surgical interventions in scleroderma  | 2021/05/04

Marie-Nicole Discepola and the SPIN Team published their protocol in BMJ Open. Their living systematic review will compile evidence on  the effectiveness of non-pharmacological and non-surgical interventions on mental and physical health outcomes. As a living systematic review, once the initial evidence is assessed, the team will keep updating on an ongoing basis so that people in the scleroderma community can easily access the most current evidence on the project website (forthcoming). Congratulations to Marie-Nicole, Andrea Carboni-Jiménez, Dr. Kwakkenbos, and Dr. Richard Henry, Dr. Thombs and the rest of the team! Read more here.

Elsa-Lynn Nassar receives the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture (FRQSC)  | 2021/05/03

Congratulations to Elsa-Lynn Nassar, who received the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Société et culture (FRQSC) Master's Award, in addition to a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Canada Graduate Scholarship for her Master’s training with the Thombs research team (see previous item on 2021/04/01)! Elsa began her MSc program today, and will be working with both the SPIN and DEPRESSD teams.

For more news about the team, please click here ...