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Researcher | Research Overview

Dr. Brown’s work explores professional norms and ethical values that underlie clinical decision-making and communication in the setting of advanced diagnostic and therapeutic technologies. His objective is to create and implement innovative solutions for optimizing ethical practice and patient-provider communication in an age of rapid technological innovation. His approach combines policy analysis, empirical research, and educational program development. His projects as a PI have included a national survey of prenatal care providers’ attitudes about pregnancy management in the setting of various fetal and maternal conditions, and development of communication skills training programs for prenatal care providers and radiologists.

Researcher | Research Background

Dr. Brown specializes in prenatal and pediatric body imaging.  A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, he completed a residency in Diagnostic Radiology at Massachusetts General Hospital and fellowships in Pediatric Radiology and Pediatric Interventional Radiology at Boston Children's Hospital. He received his obstetrical ultrasound training at Diagnostic Ultrasound Associates in Boston.


Dr. Brown completed the 2003-2004 Fellowship in Medical Ethics at Harvard Medical School. He is a longstanding member of the Children’s Hospital Ethics Advisory Committee and an Associate Ethicist in the Hospital’s Office of Ethics. He is Chair of the Professionalism Committee of the Radiological Society of North America, and a member of the RSNA Patient-Centered Radiology Steering Committee.


Dr. Brown received a 2006 Children's Hospital Faculty Career Development Award, and he was named an Eleanor and Miles Shore 50th Anniversary Scholar in Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is the inaugural recipient of the American Roentgen Ray Society Leonard Berlin Scholarship in Medical Professionalism, and a recipient of grants from the Kornfeld Program in Bioethics and Patient Care, the Greenwall Foundation, and the Harvard University Milton Fund. Dr. Brown received a 2011 RSNA Education Scholar Award, and a 2014 Boston Children’s Hospital Academy Medical Educator Award for Innovative Scholarship in Medical Education. 


Selected Publications

  1. Brown SD, Truog RD, Johnson JA, Ecker JE, Do Differences in the AAP and ACOG Positions on the Ethics of Maternal-Fetal Interventions Reflect Subtly Divergent Professional Sensitivities to Pregnant Women and Fetuses? Pediatrics. 2006 Apr; 117 (4):1382-1387.
  2. Brown SD, Daly JC, Kalish LA, McDaniel S, Financial Disclosures of Scientific Papers Presented at RSNA 2003: Association with the Reporting of Non-FDA-Approved Uses of Industry Products. Radiology 2006 Jun; 239(3):849-855.
  3. Brown SD, Lyerly AD, Little MO, Lantos, JD. Pediatrics-based Fetal Care: Unanswered Ethical Questions. Acta Paediatr 2008; 97(2):1617-1619.
  4. Brown, SD. The “Fetus as Patient”: A Critique.  Am J Bioeth. 2008 Jul;8(7):47-50
  5. Brown, SD, Goske, MJ, Johnson, CM, Beyond Substance Abuse: Stress, Burnout, and Depression as Causes of Physician Impairment and Disruptive Behavior. Journal of the American College of Radiology 2009; 6(7):479-485.
  6. Brown, SD. The Intersection of Ethics and Communication in Prenatal Imaging: Challenges for the Pediatric Radiologist. Pediatr Radiol 2010; 40(4):514-517.
  7. Brown SD, Lehman CD, Truog RD, Browning DM, Gallagher TL, Stepping Out Further from the Shadows: Disclosure of Harmful Radiologic Errors to Patients. Radiology, February 2012; 262(2):381-386.
  8. Brown SD, Ecker JL, Ward JRM, Halpern EF, Sayeed SA, Buchmiller TL, Mitchell C, Donelan K, Prenatally Diagnosed Fetal Conditions in the Age of Fetal Care: Does Who Counsels Matter? Am J Obstet Gynecol 2012 May;206(5):409-e1-409-e11.
  9. Brown SD, Professional Norms Regarding How Radiologists Handle Incidental Findings. Journal of the American College of Radiology, 2013;10:253-257.
  10. Brown SD, Donelan K, Martins Y, Burmeister K, Buchmiller TL, Sayeed SA, Mitchell C, Ecker JL. Differing Attitudes Toward Fetal Care By Pediatric And Maternal-Fetal Medicine Specialists, Pediatrics. 2012, 2012 Dec;130(6):e1534-40
  11. Brown SD, Donelan K, Martins Y, Sayeed, SA, Mitchell C, Buchmiller TL, Burmeister K, Ecker, JL. Does Professional Orientation Predict Ethical Sensitivities? Attitudes Of Pediatric And Obstetric Specialists Toward Fetuses, Pregnant Women, And Pregnancy Termination. J Med Ethics 2014;40:117–122.
  12. Brown SD, Callahan MJ, Browning DM, Lebowitz, RL, Bell SK, Jang J, Meyer EC, Radiology trainees’ comfort with difficult conversations and attitudes about error disclosure: Effect of a communication skills workshop. Journal of the American College of Radiology 2014, 10.1016/j.jacr.2014.01.018
  13. Bruno MA, Petscavage-Thomas JM, Mohr MJ, Bell SK, Brown SD, The “Open Letter”: Radiologists reports in the era of patient web portals, Journal of the American College of Radiology 2014, in press.


Researcher | Publications

Researcher | Publications