David Penson MD, MPH, MMHC

Professor and Chair
Department of Urology
Hamilton and Howd Chair in Urologic Oncology
Division of Urologic Oncology

Medical School: Boston University School of Medicine
Residency: University of California, Los Angeles
Fellowship: Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars Program, Yale University
Clinical Interests: Prostate cancer, Bladder cancer, Prostatectomy, Elevated PSA

Dr Penson serves as Chair of the Department and oversees all Departmental activities. He is also a well-known health services researcher, a urologic oncologist who focuses primarily on clinical prostate and bladder cancer care and, most importantly, the father of three great kids (all of whom are die-hard Boston Red Sox fans, like their dad).

Dr. Penson is the Director of the Center for Surgical Quality and Outcomes Research in the Vanderbilt Institute for Medicine and Public Health and maintains a keen interest in health policy and improving the quality of care in the U.S. He obtained his MD from Boston University, completed his urology residency at UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, and then completed the Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar fellowship at Yale University, while obtaining his MPH degree. He currently maintains a clinical practice in urologic oncology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.Dr. Penson is also very active in the field of health policy. In addition to serving as Chairman of the American Urological Association's Public Policy Council, Dr. Penson has served on various committees in the National Quality Forum, the Ambulatory Quality Alliance, the AMA Physician Consortium for Quality Improvement and AHRQ's National Advisory Council.

Research Information

Dr. Penson's research is focused on the comparative effectiveness of treatments for localized prostate cancer. He is the Principal Investigator (PI) of the Prostate Cancer Outcomes Study (PCOS), a large population-based study of prostate cancer survivors funded by the NCI that includes the longest longitudinal patient-reported follow-up in the field. Dr. Penson was the original PI of the CEASAR study (which is now led by Dr. Dan Barocas), a comparative effectiveness study of surgery vs. radiation for localized prostate cancer, funded by the US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). Over 3600 men have been enrolled in the CEASAR study that will determine "what works, in which patients and in whose hands." Dr. Penson's work has been published in a variety of journals, including the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, Health Affairs and JNCI.

Active Clinical Trials

PROSPER: Medivation

A Multinational, Phase 3, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Efficacy and Safety Study of Enzalutamide in Patients With Nonmetastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer

Learn more about this trial

PI: David Penson, MD

EMBARK: Medivation

A Phase 3, Randomized, Efficacy and Safety Study of Enzalutamide Plus Leuprolide, Enzalutamide Monotherapy, and Placebo Plus Leuprolide in Men With High-Risk Nonmetastatic Prostate Cancer Progressing After Definitive Therapy

Learn more about this trial

PI: David Penson, MD