Monique Jimenez, ScD

Monique Jimenez ScDMonik Jimenez, ScD
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital

Mentor: Kathryn M. Rexrode, MD, MPH, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Associate Physician, Brigham and Women’s Hospital 

Department Chair: Joseph Loscalzo, MD, PhD, Hersey Professor of the Theory and Practice of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Head of the Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital 

Project Title: “Examining Stroke Symptoms as Markers of Stroke Risk among Hispanic/Latinx Adults”

Project Description: Hispanic/Latinx adults exhibit a significantly greater incidence of total stroke, younger age at stroke mortality, and worse neurologic, cognitive, and functional outcomes post-stroke than Whites. The Questionnaire for Verifying Stroke-Free Status is a novel and validated screening tool used to identify individuals at a high risk of incident stroke through the self-report of stroke symptoms (sudden onset of unilateral weakness, unilateral numbness, loss of vision, loss of half-vision, inability to understand, and inability to communicate). Endorsement of at least one stroke symptom is predictive of subsequent stroke incidence irrespective of other stroke risk factors, based on data from clinical and epidemiologic studies. However, current research has focused exclusively on non-Hispanic Black and White adults. The relationship between stroke risk factors and stroke symptoms among and between Hispanic/Latinx adults is uncertain as are appropriate interventions among those identified to be at high-risk.

This innovative project will provide actionable solutions to address inequities in stroke among Hispanic/Latinx adults by (1) assessing the association between diabetes and hypertension (severity and clinical control) and stroke symptoms and variability across heritage groups, (2) determining the clinical, socio-economic and socio-cultural factors explaining differences in stroke symptoms across heritage groups, and (3) assessing the feasibility of a culturally tailored screening intervention targeted to Hispanic/Latinx adults at high-risk of stroke. Data previously collected by the applicant on stroke symptoms from >8,000 participants of Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos will be utilized. Findings from this research will be used as preliminary data to support future R01 level applications.

Biography: Monik C. Jiménez is an Associate Epidemiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She received both her master’s and doctoral degrees from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and a Certificate in Oral Epidemiology from Harvard School of Dental Medicine. Her NIH funded work has examined the combined impact of race/ethnicity and sex in understanding the role of socioeconomic and behavioral factors in predicting, mediating and modifying inequities in stroke. She is the recipient of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital’s Minority Faculty Career Development, the H. Richard Nesson Fellowship and a Health Equity Innovation Grant to support her work in cardiovascular health equity among incarcerated people. She is an elected Fellow of the American Heart Association and is the Chair of the Mid-Career Committee of the national Council Operations Committee. She is also a committed educator at the undergraduate and graduate level, serving as Program Director for a summer research program for URM students at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and course director of “Cardiovascular Epidemiology” and “Mass Incarceration and Health in the US” at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.