Principal Investigator

Center for Psychiatry and Behavioral Health

Assistant Professor-Clinical of Psychiatry & Behavioral Health, of Psychology and of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Director of Women’s Behavioral Health
College of Medicine
Ohio State Wexner Medical Center
1670 Upham Drive
Columbus, OH 43210

General Research:
Dr. Kristen Carpenter is trained as a clinical health psychologist and Assistant Professor in the Departments of Psychiatry & Behavioral Health, Psychology (joint), and Obstetrics & Gynecology (joint) at The Ohio State University, as well as a member of the OSU Comprehensive Cancer Center (CCC).  She is Director of Ambulatory Services and Women’s Behavioral Health at OSU’s Harding Hospital. In this capacity, she provides clinical care to women with sexual dysfunction, education to staff throughout the OSU Wexner Medical Center and James Cancer Hospital (e.g., physicians, nurses, social workers).  She also serves on the Steering Committee of the Scientific Network on Female Sexual Health and Cancer (  Dr. Carpenter’s research involves understanding the role of cognitive, affective, and interpersonal processes in women’s sexual, psychological, and physical health outcomes. To date, much of this work has focused on identification of risk factors for sexual and psychological maladjustment in gynecologic and breast cancer patients during various stages of diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship. A second line of research focuses on identification of cognitive and interpersonal processes that modulate sexual and psychological outcomes in women with cancer, with the goal of developing a more complex model of sexual and psychological adjustment that incorporates not only premorbid risk, but also cognitive and interpersonal process variables with potential clinical utility.  Dr. Carpenter studied psychology as an undergraduate at Northwestern University and, following four years of work in healthcare management consulting, obtained Masters and Doctoral degrees in Psychology from the Ohio State University under Dr. Barbara Andersen.  She completed her clinical internship at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, Illinois and, following a postdoctoral fellowship in Cancer Prevention and Control Research at the University of California-Los Angeles under Dr. Annette Stanton, Dr. Carpenter accepted her current position at The Ohio State University, where she is pursuing specialized postdoctoral training in tumor immunology and clinical trials research.
Research Interests:
  • Behavioral medicine
  • Clinical health psychology
  • Women’s health
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Psychological, cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Psychological interventions

Current Research Projects:

  1. The impact of optimism and coping on the experience of side effects of adjuvant chemotherapy. Pilot study designed to examine the association between pre-chemotherapy psychosocial factors and patient-reported ratings of toxicity and health-related quality of life.
  2. Psychosexual intervention for patients with gynecologic and breast cancer. Pilot of a randomized clinical trial of psychological intervention for patients coping with adverse sexual sequelae of gynecologic cancer diagnosis and treatment.
  3. Sexual Morbidity Among AYA Cancer Survivors: The Role of Sexual Self-Efficacy and Sexual Communication. Online survey study designed to explore sexual morbidity in young adult survivors of cancer and compare to matched peers.
  4. Improving Prediction of Chemotherapy Induced Nausea: Integrating Genes, Behavior, and the Microbiome. This is an observational study of side effects of chemotherapy experienced by first time chemotherapy patients being given moderate to high emetogentic medications.
  5. Counseling Intervention during Radiation Therapy for Women with Gynecologic Cancer. An early intervention prior to and after radiation therapy to improve physical and psychological effects of gynecological cancer treatment.

Active Funding:


NextGen James Ambassadors


Fowler, J.M., Carpenter, K.M., Gupta, P., Golden-Kreutz, D.M., Andersen B.L. (2004). The gynecologic oncology consult: Symptom presentation and concurrent symptoms of depression and anxiety. Obstetrics & Gynecology, 103, 1211-1217.


Carpenter, K.M., & Andersen, B.L. (2005). Reclassification will not make the pain go away: Peer commentary on Binik’s “Should dyspareunia be retained as a sexual dysfunction in DSM-V? A painful classification decision. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 34, 23-61.


Golden-Kreutz, D.M., Thornton, L.M., Wells-diGregorio, S.M., Frierson, G.M., Jim, H.S., Carpenter, K.M., Shelby, R.A., & Andersen, B.L. (2005). Traumatic stress, perceived global stress, and life events: Prospectively predicting quality of life in breast cancer patients. Health Psychology, 24, 288-296.


Andersen, B.L., Carpenter, K.M., Yang, H.C., & Shapiro, C. (2007). Sexual well-being among partnered women with breast cancer recurrence. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 25, 3151-3157.


Ancker, J.S., Carpenter, K.M., Greene, P., Hoffmann, R., Kukafka, R., Marlow, L.A.V., Prigerson, H.G., Quillin, J.M. (2009). Peer-to-peer communication, cancer prevention, and the internet. Journal of Health Communication, 14 (Suppl 1), 38-46.


Diefenbach, M., Turner, G., Carpenter, K.M., Sheldon, L., Mustian, K., Gerend, M., Rini, C., von Wagner, C., Gritz, E.R., McQueen, A., Prayor-Patterson, H. (2009). Cancer and patient communication. Journal of Health Communication, 14 (Suppl 1), 57-65.


Carpenter, K.M., Andersen, B.L., Fowler, J.M., & Maxwell, G.L. (2009). Sexual self schema as a moderator of sexual and psychological outcomes for gynecologic cancer survivors. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 38, 828-841.


Levin, A.O., Carpenter, K.M., & Andersen, B.L. (2010). Psychological issues. In: J. Berek N. Hacker (Eds.), Gynecologic Oncology (pp. 860-876). Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.


Levin, A.O., Carpenter, K.M., Fowler, J.M., Brothers, B., Andersen, B.L., & Maxwell, G.L. (2010). Sexual morbidity associated with poorer psychological adjustment among gynecological cancer survivors. International Journal of Gynecological Cancer, 20, 461-470.


Carpenter, K.M., Fowler, J.M., Maxwell, G.L., & Andersen, B.L. (2010). Direct and buffering effects of social support among gynecologic cancer survivors. Annals of Behavioral Medicine, 39, 79-90.


Wells-di Gregorio, S.M., Carpenter, K.M., Dorfman, C., Yang, H.C., Simonelli, L., & Carson, W.E. III. (2012).  Impact of breast cancer recurrence and cancer-related stress on spouse health and immunity. Brain, Behavior, & Immunity, 26, 228-233.


Carpenter, K.M., Eisenberg, S., Low, C., Beran, T., Weltfreid, S., Jorge, A., & Stanton, A.L. (2014). Cancer-Related Cognitive Processing as a Function of BRCA1/2 Genetic Mutation Status, Personal Cancer History, and Age.  Health Psychology, 33, 1003-1011.

Hoyt, M. & Carpenter, K.M. (2014). Sexual self-schema and depressive symptoms after prostate cancer.  Psycho-Oncology.  Advance online publication.  doi: 10.1002/pon.3601

Neff, R., McCann, G.A., Carpenter, K.M., Cohn, D.E., Noria, S., Mikami, D., & O’Malley, D. (2014).  Is bariatric surgery and option for women with gynecologic cancer? Examining weight loss counseling practices and training among gynecologic oncology providers.  Gynecologic Oncology.  Advance online publication. doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2014.06.006

Brothers, B.M., Carpenter, K.M., Shelby, R.A., Thornton, L.M., Frierson, G.F., Patterson, K.L., & Andersen, B.L.  (2015). Dissemination of an evidence-based treatment for cancer patients:  Training is the necessary first step. Translational Behavioral Medicine, 5, 103-112.  DOI: 10.1007/s13142-014-0273-0

Berger AM, Mooney K, Alvarez-Perez A, Breitbart WS, Carpenter KM, Cella D, Cleeland C, Dotan E, Eisenberger MA, Escalante CP, Jacobsen PB, Jankowski C, LeBlanc T, Ligibel JA, Loggers ET, Mandrell B, Murphy BA, Palesh O, Pirl WF, Plaxe SC, Riba MB, Rugo HS, Salvador C, Wagner LI, Wagner-Johnston ND, Zachariah, FJ, Bergman MA, Smith C. (2015). Cancer-Related Fatigue, version 2.2015. Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, 13, 1012-1039.

Rath, K., Huffman, L., Phillips, G.S., Carpenter, K.M., & Fowler, J.M.  (2015). Burnout and associated factors among members of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology.  American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, 213(6), 824.e1-e9.

Bober, S.L., Reese, J.B., Barbera, L., Bradford, A., Carpenter, K.M., Goldfarb, S., Lindau, S., Carter, J.  (2016).  How to ask and what to do: A guide for clinical inquiry and intervention regarding female sexual health after cancer. Current Opinion in Supportive & Palliative Care, 10, 44-54. PMID: 26716390


Zaleta, A., Neff, R., McCann, G., O’Malley, D, & Carpenter, K.M.  (2017). Perceptions of weight management counseling among gynecologic cancer survivors: Opportunities for enhancing survivorship care.  Supportive Care in Cancer, 25(5), 1537-1545. PMID: 28050708.


Breitborde, N., Guirgis, H., Stearns, W., Carpenter, K., Lteif, G., Pine, J., Storey, N., Wastler, H., Moe, A. (2019). The Ohio State University Early Psychosis Intervention Center (EPICENTER) Step-Based Care Program for Individuals at Clinical-High Risk for Psychosis: Study Protocol. BMJ Open. 2020; doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-034031


Stanislaus, M.A., Reno, J.L., Small, R.H., Coffman, J., Prasad, M., Meyer, A., Carpenter, K.M., Coffman, J.C., Coffman, J.C. (2020). Continuous epidural hydromorphone infusion for post-cesarean delivery analgesia in a patient maintained on methadone: A case report. Journal of Pain Research, 13, 837-842. Doi: 10.2147/JPR.S242271.


Frederick, N., Lehmann, V., Ahler, A., Carpenter, K.M. Cherven, B., Klosky, J., Nahata, L., Quinn, G. (2020). Psychosexual Functioning in Cancer Survivorship: What the Pediatric Oncologist Needs to Know. Pediatric Blood & Cancer. DOI:10.1002/pbc.28437


Reno, J., Palettas, M.S., Coffman, J.H., Prasad, M.R., Meyer, A.M., Carpenter, K.M., Kushlelev, M., Coffman, J.C., (under review). Post-Cesarean Delivery Analgesic Outcomes in Patients Maintained on Methadone and Buprenorphine: a Retrospective Investigation. International Journal of Obstetric Anesthesia.


Lo, S.B., Brothers, B.M., Ryba, M.M., Carpenter, K.M., Frierson, G., Shelby, R.A., Thornton, L., Anderson, B.L., (under review). Dissemination and beyond: Replicating dissemination and discovering mechanisms for implementation of an empirically supported treatment

PubMed articles

Current staff:Nichole Storey, MHS, Kate Conroy, BA

Education and Training:
MA: Psychology, The Ohio State University
PhD: Psychology, The Ohio State University

Postgraduate Education/Training:
Postdoctoral Fellow: NCI/NIH R25T Training Program in Cancer Prevention and Control, University of California Los Angeles
Postdoctoral Fellow: T32 Training Program in Cancer Immunology, The Ohio State University

Editorial Activities:
Abstract Reviewer, Society of Behavioral Medicine Annual Meeting, 2007-present
Internal Review Board, Health Psychology, 2007-2009
Ad hoc Reviewer:
Annals of Behavioral Medicine
Behavior Research & Therapy
CNN Newsource
Expert Reviews of Obstetrics and Gynecology
Gynecologic Oncology
Health Psychology
Journal of Affective Disorders
Journal of Sexual Medicine
Marriage and Family Review
Psychology and Health
Supportive Care in Cancer
Women & Health

American Psychological Association, Division 38 and Division 12 Affiliate
Society of Behavioral Medicine
Scientific Network on Female Sexual Health & Cancer

2012 Outstanding Population Sciences Poster, 1st place, OSU Cancer Center Scientific Meeting
2010 2011 Outstanding Cancer Control Poster, 1st place, OSU Cancer Center Scientific Meeting
2008 NCI/American Society of Preventive Oncology Young Investigators’ Grantsmanship Workshop (competitive admission)
2008 Citation paper, Society of Behavioral Medicine
2008-2011 Clinical Loan Repayment Program (NCI), awarded
2008, competitive renewal granted
2005 Alumni Grant for Graduate Research and Scholarship, The Ohio State University
2005 Ray Travel Award for Scholarship and Service, The Ohio State University
2005 Outstanding Cancer Control Poster, 1st place, OSU Cancer Center Scientific Meeting
2002 Award for Meritorious Teaching, Department of Psychology, The Ohio State University
2001-2005 Psychology Department Fellow, The Ohio State University

Log in