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Karen Lisa Smith, M.D., M.P.H.

Photo of Dr. Karen Lisa Smith, M.D., M.P.H.

Assistant Professor of Oncology


Expertise: Breast Cancer, Cancer Genetics, Cancer Survivorship, Clinical Trials, Hereditary Breast Cancer, Medical Oncology, Toxicology

Research Interests: Breast Cancer, Cancer Survivorship, breast cancer clinical trials, toxicities of cancer therapies, hereditary breast cancer, triple negative breast ancer, physician-patient communications and racial disparities more

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Sibley Memorial Hospital
Appointment Phone: 202-660-6500

5255 Loughboro Road, NW
1st Floor
Washington, DC 20016 map
Fax: 202-660-6501


Dr. Karen L. Smith is a medical oncologist at Sibley Memorial Hospital that specializes in breast cancer and an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University, as well as a member of the Johns Hopkins Breast Cancer Program. She is board certified in internal medicine and medical oncology and practices out of Sibley Memorial Hospital. 

Dr. Smith has an expertise in breast cancer, cancer genetics and cancer survivorship. 

Dr. Smith earned her medical degree from Rush Medical College. She completed a residency in internal medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, followed by a fellowship in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. Smith also completed a fellowship in hematology and oncology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Before joining Johns Hopkins, Dr. Smith was an assistant professor at Georgetown University and director of the Washington Hospital Center Housestaff Hematology/Oncology rotation, where she was also chair of the Breast Cancer Survivorship Committee and Cancer Committee.  

Dr. Smith is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. Previously, she was a member of the Clinical Review Committee for Medstar South.

Dr. Smith has earned merit awards and a young investigator award from the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Foundation to further her breast cancer research. She has contributed to numerous peer-reviewed papers and book chapters regarding her research interests in breast cancer, cancer survivorship, breast cancer clinical trials, toxicities of cancer therapies, hereditary breast cancer, triple negative breast cancer, physician-patient communications and racial disparities. more


  • Assistant Professor of Oncology

Departments / Divisions



  • MD, Rush Medical College (1998)


  • Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania / Internal Medicine (2002)


  • Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine / Internal Medicine (2003)
  • Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center / Hematology and Oncology (2006)

Board Certifications

  • American Board of Internal Medicine / Internal Medicine (2002)

Research & Publications

Clinical Trial Keywords

Breast cancer clinical trials

Selected Publications

Peer-Reviewed Papers:

Smith K, Wray L, Klein-Carbal M, Schuchter L, Fox K, Glick J, Demichele A. Racial Disparities in Adjuvant Chemotherapy for Breast Cancer are not due to Excess Toxicity in African Americans. Clinical Breast Cancer. Vol 6, 2005:260-6.

Smith, KL, Adank M, Kauff N, Lafaro K, Boyd J, Lee J, Hudis C, Offit K, Robson M. BRCA Mutations in Women with Ductal Carcinoma in Situ: Prevalence and Risk Factors. Clinical Cancer Research. Vol 13, 2007:4306-10.

Dang C, DAndrea G, Lake D, Sugarman S, Fornier M, Moynahan ME, Gilewski T, Hurria A, Mills N, Troso-Sandoval T, George R, Robson M, Dickler M, Smith K, Panageas KS, Norton L, Hudis CA. Prolonged dose-dense epirubicin and cyclophosphamide followed by paclitaxel in breast cancer is feasible. Clinical Breast Cancer 2008 Oct;8(5):418-24.

Isaacs C, Herbolsheimer P, Liu M, Wilkinson M, Ottaviano Y, Chung G, Warren R, Eng-Wong J, Cohen P, Smith KL, Creswell K, Novielli A, Slack R. Phase I/II study of sorafenib with anastrozole in patients with hormone receptor positive aromatase inhibitor resistant metastatic breast cancer. Breast Cancer Research and Treatment. Vol 125, 2011:137-143.

Herbolsheimer P, Kapoor R, Smith KL, Perry D, Verma N, Veytsman I, Jelinek J, Swain SM. Phase I trial of dasatinib and ixabepilone in patients with solid tumors. Investigational New Drugs. 2012 Mar 6, epub ahead of print.

Khozin S, Roth MJ, Rajan A, Smith K, Thomas A, Berman A, Giaccone G. Hepatoid carcinoma of the lung with anaplastic lymphoma kinase gene rearrangement. Journal of Thoracic COncology. 2012 Nov;7(11):e29-31.

Reviews and Chapters:

Smith K. Patient 48: A 58-year old woman with ductal carcinoma in situ. In: Danso MA, Basch EM, eds. Hematology and Oncology Pearls. Philadelphia: Elsevier Mosby, 2005.

Smith K. Patient 51: A 48-year old woman with stage II breast cancer. In: Danso MA, Basch EM, eds. Hematology and Oncology Pearls. Philadelphia: Elsevier Mosby, 2005.

Smith K. Patient 69: A 56-year old woman with hormone-receptor-positive early-stage breast cancer. In: Danso MA, Basch EM, eds. Hematology and Oncology Pearls. Philadelphia: Elsevier Mosby, 2005.

Smith KL, Robson M. Update on Hereditary Breast Cancer. Current Oncology Reports. Vol 8, 2006:14-21.

Smith KL, Dang C, Seidman A. Cardiac Dysfunction Associated with Trastuzumab. Expert Opinion on Drug Safety. Vol 5, 2006: 619-29.

Demarco TA, Smith KL, Nusbaum RH, Peshkin BN, Schwartz MD, Isaacs C. Practical Aspects of Delivering Hereditary Cancer Risk Counseling. Seminars in Oncology. Vol 34, 2007: 369-378.

Smith KL, Isaacs C. Management of Women at Increased Risk for Hereditary Breast Cancer. Breast Disease: An International Journal. Vol 27, 2006-2007: 51-67.

Smith KL, Isaacs C. Chapter 15: Breast Cancer Screening and Prevention Options in BRCA1 and BRCA2 Mutation Carriers. In: Hereditary Breast Cancer. Editors: Isaacs C, Rebbeck TA. Informa Healthcare. New York, 2008.

Smith KL, Isaacs C. Poly(ADP-Ribose) Inhibition: Exploring a New Approach to Breast Cancer Prevention in BRCA1/2 Mutation Carriers. Current Breast Cancer Reports. Epub July 1, 2011.

Smith KL, Isaacs C. BRCA Mutation Testing in Determining Breast Cancer Treatment. The Cancer Journal. Volume 17, 2011:492-499.

Activities & Honors


  • Merit-Based Scholarship, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, 2002 - 2003
  • Master of Public Health Capstone Award, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health , 2003
  • Merit Award, ASCO Foundation, 2005
  • Young Investigator Award, ASCO Foundation, 2005
  • Merit Award, ASCO Foundation, 2006


  • American Society of Clinical Oncology, 2003
  • Breast Cancer Survivorship Committee, 2011 - 2013
  • Cancer Committee, 2008 - 2013
  • Clinical Review Committee Medstar South, 2011 - 2013
  • Housestaff Hematology/Oncology Rotation, 2007 - 2011

Professional Activities

  • Chair, MedStar Washington Hospital Center, 2008 - 2013
    Cancer Committee
  • Chair, Medstar Washington Hospital Center, 2011 - 2013
    Breast Cancer Survivorship Committee
  • Director, Medstar Washington Hospital Center, 2007 - 2011
    Housestaff Hematology/Oncology Rotation
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