Eric L. Grogan, M.D., M.P.H.

Associate Professor
Department of Thoracic Surgery

Lung nodule evaluation; Health services research; Lung cancer predictive modeling; Small nodule localization research


Dr. Grogan's clinical practice includes all areas of general thoracic surgery. He has experience in the treatment of lung and esophageal cancer, lung failure surgery, lung transplantation, mediastinal tumors, and tracheal and bronchoplastic procedures. Dr. Grogan's clinical interests have focused on minimally invasive thoracic surgery for treatment of lung cancer and benign esophageal diseases. He performs VATS lobectomies, radiotracer guided excision of small pulmonary nodules, and laparoscopic and thoracoscopic esophageal surgical procedures.

Dr. Grogan was born in Charlottesville, Virginia and raised in Paducah, Kentucky. He attended Lipscomb University in Nashville, TN and graduated summa cum laude in 1995. In 1999, he received his medical degree with honors from Vanderbilt University. After completing a general surgery internship and residency at Vanderbilt, Dr. Grogan continued his cardiothoracic surgery training at the University of Virginia where he also was the minimally invasive thoracic fellow. During his surgical training, he also obtained a Master's in Public Health from Vanderbilt University focusing on surgical outcomes research and quality improvement.

Dr. Grogan's current research focuses on the early detection and optimal therapy for patients with lung cancer. He holds a secondary appointment with the Department of Medicine and the Institute for Medicine and Public Health.

Dr. Grogan joined the Vanderbilt University faculty in July, 2008.

As a Thoracic Surgeon and clinical scientist at both Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Nashville Veterans Affairs Medical Center for over 13 years, Dr. Grogan’s research focuses on improving the evaluation of lung nodules suspicious for lung cancer and reducing disparities in lung cancer screening and outcomes. He and his team have worked to identify populations of patients who are at higher risk for false positive imaging, have developed clinical models to predict who has benign or malignant disease and have evaluated the impact of biomarkers to improve the diagnostic algorithm. Dr. Grogan has studied the impact of imaging (FDG-PET scan), cancer, and fungal biomarkers to improve the accuracy of the evaluation of lung nodules suspicious for cancer. He and his team have made important discoveries demonstrating that fungal lung disease, such as histoplasmosis, is an important cause of false positive evaluations in lung nodules and have investigated promising serum tests to non-invasively diagnose histoplasmosis in these indeterminate lung nodules. Dr. Grogan and his team work closely with industry and the EDRN network to evaluate cancer and fungal biomarkers that will be useful in improving the accuracy of diagnosing lung cancer. Their research has also sought to evaluate the impact of race and veteran status on lung cancer screening and survival.


He is the co-leader of the TREAT Lung Cancer team and the MASLAB at Vanderbilt, both of which are experienced multidisciplinary research teams with expertise in epidemiology, biostatistics, lung cancer biomarkers, and clinical trials. Their work has helped redefine US guidelines for lung cancer screening to reduce disparities among African Americans and they maintain one of the largest biomarker clinical validation centers in the country, funded by the EDRN. In addition to being the PI of an EDRN-funded U01 focused on the validation of biomarkers of risk for the early detection of lung cancer (U01CA152662), Dr. Grogan is currently the PI of an R01 examining the clinical utility of biomarkers-driven management of indeterminate pulmonary nodules (R01CA252964) and a VA Merit award whose objective is improving lung cancer screening for veterans (1I01CX002468).


B.S., David Lipscomb University, Summa Cum Laude, 1995
M.D., Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Alpha Omega Alpha, 1999
M.P.H., Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, 2004

Postgraduate Training

Internship and General Surgery Residency, Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Minimally Invasive Thoracic Fellow, University of Virginia
Cardiothoracic Residency, University of Virginia

Board Certifications

  • The American Board of Surgery
  • The American Board of Thoracic Surgery

Dr. Grogan's Curriculum Vitae is available in PDF format.

View Dr. Grogan's publications on PubMed


Eric L. Grogan, M.D. M.P.H.
Associate Professor of Thoracic Surgery                                                                                                                                                                                                          Vice Chairman of Research
Associate Professor of Medicine                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Section Chief Thoracic Surgery                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Veterans Hospital, Nashville, TN