Theodore Colton, ScD

Emeritus Professor, Epidemiology
Theodore Colton


Dr. Colton has more than 50 years of experience in biostatistical and epidemiologic collaboration and consultation with health professionals. He was chair of the former BUSPH Epidemiology and Biostatistics department, 1980-99. He is a prominent biostatistical and epidemiologic educator of clinicians and other medical researchers. At BUSPH, he initiated the Epidemiology Doctoral Program, the first doctoral degree program at the School. He is a founding editor of the journal Statistics in Medicine, and has served on numerous editorial boards, including that for the New England Journal of Medicine. He is co-editor-in-chief of the Encyclopedia of Biostatistics, a widely used reference work now in its second edition and available in hard copy and online. Dr. Colton also authored the textbook Statistics in Medicine, a widely used text in medical schools and schools of public health. Dr. Colton’s specific interests include clinical trials. He is co-investigator on several ongoing trials at Boston Medical Center and serves on numerous Data and Safety Monitoring boards for government-sponsored as well as industrial-sponsored trials. He is co-editor of Biostatistics in Clinical Trials, a volume derived from the Encyclopedia of Biostatistics.  In epidemiology, his research interests are in cancer, infants and children, and vision research.

Other Positions

  • Chair Emeritus of Epidemiology, Epidemiology, Boston University School of Public Health
  • Boston Medical Center


  • Johns Hopkins University, ScD
  • University of North Carolina, MS
  • Brooklyn College, AB


  • Published on 12/25/2013

    Berk JL, Suhr OB, Obici L, Sekijima Y, Zeldenrust SR, Yamashita T, Heneghan MA, Gorevic PD, Litchy WJ, Wiesman JF, Nordh E, Corato M, Lozza A, Cortese A, Robinson-Papp J, Colton T, Rybin DV, Bisbee AB, Ando Y, Ikeda S, Seldin DC, Merlini G, Skinner M, Kelly JW, Dyck PJ. Repurposing diflunisal for familial amyloid polyneuropathy: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA. 2013 Dec 25; 310(24):2658-67. PMID: 24368466.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 2/23/2012

    Lister G, Rybin DV, Colton T, Heeren TC, Hunt CE, Colson ER, Willinger M, Corwin MJ. Relationship between sleep position and risk of extreme cardiorespiratory events. J Pediatr. 2012 Jul; 161(1):22-5.e1. PMID: 22364822.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 10/6/2011

    Hoover RN, Hyer M, Pfeiffer RM, Adam E, Bond B, Cheville AL, Colton T, Hartge P, Hatch EE, Herbst AL, Karlan BY, Kaufman R, Noller KL, Palmer JR, Robboy SJ, Saal RC, Strohsnitter W, Titus-Ernstoff L, Troisi R. Adverse health outcomes in women exposed in utero to diethylstilbestrol. N Engl J Med. 2011 Oct 6; 365(14):1304-14. PMID: 21991952.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 11/1/2010

    Smith LA, Colson ER, Rybin D, Margolis A, Colton T, Lister G, Corwin MJ. Maternal assessment of physician qualification to give advice on AAP-recommended infant sleep practices related to SIDS. Acad Pediatr. 2010 Nov-Dec; 10(6):383-8. PMID: 21075318.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 12/1/2009

    Colson ER, Rybin D, Smith LA, Colton T, Lister G, Corwin MJ. Trends and factors associated with infant sleeping position: the national infant sleep position study, 1993-2007. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2009 Dec; 163(12):1122-8. PMID: 19996049.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 10/8/2009

    Fernandez WG, Winter MR, Mitchell PM, Bullock H, Donovan J, St George J, Feldman JA, Gallagher SS, McKay MP, Bernstein E, Colton T. Six-month follow-up of a brief intervention on self-reported safety belt use among emergency department patients. Acad Emerg Med. 2009 Nov; 16(11):1221-4. PMID: 19814758.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 8/1/2006

    Colson ER, Levenson S, Rybin D, Calianos C, Margolis A, Colton T, Lister G, Corwin MJ. Barriers to following the supine sleep recommendation among mothers at four centers for the Women, Infants, and Children Program. Pediatrics. 2006 Aug; 118(2):e243-50. PMID: 16882769.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 3/1/2006

    Brinton LA, Lubin JH, Murray MC, Colton T, Hoover RN. Mortality rates among augmentation mammoplasty patients: an update. Epidemiology. 2006 Mar; 17(2):162-9. PMID: 16477256.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 11/1/2005

    Colson ER, McCabe LK, Fox K, Levenson S, Colton T, Lister G, Corwin MJ. Barriers to following the back-to-sleep recommendations: insights from focus groups with inner-city caregivers. Ambul Pediatr. 2005 Nov-Dec; 5(6):349-54. PMID: 16302836.

    Read at: PubMed
  • Published on 10/1/2004

    Brinton LA, Buckley LM, Dvorkina O, Lubin JH, Colton T, Murray MC, Hoover R. Risk of connective tissue disorders among breast implant patients. Am J Epidemiol. 2004 Oct 1; 160(7):619-27. PMID: 15383405.

    Read at: PubMed

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