Division of Critical Care

Deborah J. Cook


Professor Department's of Medicine and Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics

Canada Research Chair: Research Transfer in ICU

Academic Chair, Critical Care Medicine, McMaster

Past Chair, Canadian Critical Care Trials Group

Co-Chair, Critical Care Research Interest Group

Staff Physician, St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton


Education and Professional Standing

  • Medical Degree (MD), McMaster University: 1985
  • Internal Medicine, McMaster University: 1985-1988
  • Academic General Internal Medicine Fellowship: 1988-1989
  • Masters of Science (Health Research Methods), McMaster University: 1988-1990
  • Critical Care Fellowship, Stanford University: 1988-1990

Research Interests

Dr. Cook designs and conducts patient-centered research in the ICU. She is interested in risk factors for serious illness, prevention of ICU-acquired complications, life support technology, and end-of-life decisions for critically ill patients.  Her methodological interests are in the design and conduct of multicenter randomized trials, minimizing bias in systematic reviews, and incorporation of diverse kinds of evidence into practice guidelines and clinical recommendations.

Activities and Contributions  

Dr. Cook is a clinician-researcher at McMaster University. She holds an Academic Chair in Critical Care Medicine at McMaster and a Canada Research Chair for Research Transfer in Intensive Care.  She is a member of the CLARITY (Clinical Advances through Research and Information Translation) Research Group.  Dr. Cook has had an enormous influence on evidence-based decision-making in critical care worldwide by providing numerous lectures, plenary addresses and leading workshops. 

Dr. Cook practices critical care medicine at St. Joseph’s Healthcare where she supervises medical students, residents and fellows from numerous specialties.  She also supervises both Masters and PhD graduate students in the Health Research Methodology Program.

Dr. Cook has been recognized for her accomplishments in research, education, and mentoring with many local, national and international awards, including the 2009 Critical Care Faculty Teaching Award.  She and Dr Maureen Meade Co-Chair an ICU special interest group called ACCADEMY (Academy of Critical Care: Development, Evaluation, and Methodology) for ICU clinicians in research training.

Selected Publications  

  1. Finfer S, Chittock DR, Su SY, Blair D, Foster D, Dhingra V, Bellomo R, Cook D, Dodek P, Henderson WR, Hebert PC, Heritier S, Heyland DK, McArthur C, McDonald E, Mitchell I, Myburgh JA, Norton R, Potter J, Robinson BG, Ronco JJ.  Intensive versus conventional glucose control in critically ill patients.  N Engl J Med. 2009 Mar 26; 360(13): 1283-97.
  2. Cook DJ, Rocker G, Marshall J, Sjokvist P, Dodek P, Griffith L, Freitag A, Varon J, Bradley C, Levy M, Finfer S, Hamielec C, McMullin J, Weaver B, Walter S, Guyatt GH, for the Level of Care Study Investigators and The Canadian Critical Care Trials Group.  Withdrawal of mechanical ventilation in anticipation of death in the intensive care unit. N Engl J Med 2003;349:1123-32.
  3. Cook DJ, Guyatt GH, Marshall J, Leasa D, Fuller H, Hall R, Peters S, Rutledge F, Griffith L, McLellan A, Wood G, Kirby A, Tweeddale M, Pagliarello G, Johnston R, for the Canadian Critical Care Trials Group. A comparison of sucralfate and ranitidine for prevention of upper gastrointestinal bleeding in patients requiring mechanical ventilation. N Engl J Med 1998; 338(12):791-797

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