Faculty Profile

Dr. Shadi Nahvi, M.D.,  M.S.

Shadi Nahvi, M.D., M.S.

Associate Professor, Department of Medicine (General Internal Medicine)

Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Areas of Research: * Optimizing the efficacy and delivery of smoking cessation treatment for persons with substance use disorders * Improving the quality of life of persons with substance use disorders

Professional Interests

Dr. Shadi Nahvi is an Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and Co-Director of the General Internal Medicine and Addiction Medicine Fellowship Programs.  Her research focuses on optimizing quality of life and health outcomes among persons with substance use disorder.

Dr. Nahvi’s research is grounded in over a decade of clinical experience as a primary care physician caring for persons with opioid and other substance use disorders. Her primary research focus is optimizing the efficacy and delivery of tobacco cessation treatments among persons with co-occurring substance use disorders. Currently, she is Principal Investigator of a NIDA R01-funded randomized, 2 x 2 factorial trial of directly observed and long-term varenicline treatment among smokers with opioid use disorder. She has also led a KL2 Career Development Award-funded, randomized, placebo-controlled pilot trial of varenicline for smoking cessation among smokers with co-morbid substance use disorder, a study of health system-level interventions to increase documentation and treatment of tobacco use among substance use disorder counselors, and a randomized trial of the efficacy of directly observed varenicline provided at a methadone clinic for promoting smoking cessation and enhancing adherence. 

Dr. Nahvi graduated from the Brown University School of Medicine in 2001 and completed residency training in Primary Care Internal Medicine at Bellevue Hospital and New York University Medical Center in 2004.  She then joined the faculty in the Albert Einstein College of Medicine Division of Substance Abuse as the Medical Director of a substance abuse treatment clinic. From 2006-2008, Dr. Nahvi completed a faculty fellowship supported by the Bronx Center to Reduce and Eliminate Ethnic and Racial Health Disparities, a NIH-funded health disparities Center of Excellence.  Through this fellowship, she completed the Einstein Clinical Research Training Program and received a MS in Clinical Research Methods. 

Dr. Nahvi has served on numerous national advisory committees, including serving as a member of the Advisory Committee of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco Health Disparities Network, and co-chair of the Evaluation Committee of the Health Disparities Network; a member of the NY State Department of Health AIDS Institute’s Guideline Committee for the Care of Substance Users; and a Steering Committee member of the NY State Department of Health AIDS Institute's Tobacco Cessation Improvement Campaign.


  1. Bank of America Community Fellow (for clinical work in underserved settings), 2004
  2. National Institutes of Health (NIH) Loan Repayment Program Award for Health Disparities Research, 2007
  3. American Legacy Foundation Travel Scholarship to Increase Diversity in Nicotine and Tobacco Research, 2008
  4. The Michael Price Scholars Program, Albert Einstein College of Medicine: Mentored Clinical and Translational Research Career Development Award: "Smoking Cessation Treatment and Pharmacogenetics for Methadone Maintenance Patients," 2008
  5. Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development (K23) Award, 2010
  6. Einstein Center for AIDS Research Pilot Award, 2011
  7. Smoking Cessation Leadership Committee/Pfizer Innovative Grants for Learning and Change, 2015
  8. Association of Medical Education and Research in Substance Abuse New Investigator/Educator Award, 2015
  9. Achieving smoking cessation milestones in opioid treatment patients: a randomized 2 x 2 factorial trial of directly observed and long-term varenicline, NIDA R01 Award, 2017                                                        

Selected Publications

Selected recent publications:

Nahvi S, Segal KS, Litwin AH, Arnsten JH. Rationale and design of a randomized controlled trial of varenicline directly observed therapy delivered in methadone clinics. Addiction Science and Clinical Practice. 2014, 13;9:9

Nahvi S, Blackstock O, Sohler NL, Thompson D, Cunningham CO. Smoking cessation treatment among office-based buprenorphine treatment patients. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. 2014, 47(2):175-9

Nahvi S, Ning Y, Segal KS, Richter KP, Arnsten JH. Varenicline efficacy and safety among methadone maintained smokers: A randomized placebo-controlled trial. Addiction. 2014, 109(9):1554-63

Griffin J, Segal KS, Arnsten JH, Nahvi S. Barriers to telephone quitline use among methadone maintained smokers. Nicotine & Tobacco Research. 2015,17(8):931-6

Batchelder AW, Peyser D, Nahvi S, Arnsten JH, Litwin AH. "Hepatitis C treatment turned me around:" Psychological and behavioral transformation related to Hepatitis C treatment. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 2015, 153:66-71

Maradiaga J, Nahvi S, Cunningham CO, Sanchez J, Fox AD. "I kicked the hard way. I got incarcerated." Withdrawal from methadone during incarceration and subsequent aversion to medication assisted treatments. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. 2016, 62:49-54

Fitzgerald SA, Faseru B, Mussulman L, Howser E, Nahvi S, Goggin K, Cooperman NA, Richter KP. Improving quality of care for hospitalized smokers with HIV: Tobacco dependence treatment referral and utilization. The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety. 2016, 42(5):219-24

Shah PA, Cunningham CO, Blackstock OJ, Brisbane MT, Nahvi S. Use of smoking cessation methods among patients receiving office-based buprenorphine maintenance treatment. Journal of Addiction Medicine. 2017, 11(6):494-497

Adams TR, Arnsten JH, Ning Y, Nahvi S. Feasibility and preliminary effectiveness of varenicline for treating co-occurring cannabis and tobacco use. Journal of Psychoactive Drugs. 2018, 50(1):12-18

Sohler NL, Starrels J, Khalid L, Bachhuber M, Arnsten JH, Nahvi S, Jost J, Cunningham CO. Marijuana use is associated with lower odds of prescription opioid analgesic use among HIV-infected individuals with chronic pain. Substance Use and Misuse. 2018, 17:1-6

Minami H, Brinkman HR, Nahvi S, Arnsten JH, Rivera-Mindt M, Wetter DW, Litvin Bloom E, Price LH, Vieira C, Donnelly R, McClain LM, Kennedy KA, D'Aquila E, Fine M, McCarthy DE, Thomas JG, Hecht J, Brown RA. Rationale, design and pilot feasibility results of a smartphone-assisted, mindfulness-based intervention for smokers with mood disorders: Project mSMART MIND. Contemporary Clinical Trials. 2018, 66:26-44

Weinberger AH, Pacek LR, Wall MM, Zvolensky MJ, Copeland J, Galea S, Nahvi S, Moeller SJ, Hasin DS, Goodwin RD. Trends in cannabis use disorder by cigarette smoking status in the United States, 2002 to 2016. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 2018, 191:45-51

Nahvi S, Arnsten JH. Missed opportunities to test the neuropsychiatric safety--and efficacy--of varenicline among smokers with substance use disorders. Drug and Alcohol Dependence. 2018, 185: 245-247.

More Information About Dr. Shadi Nahvi


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Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Melrose On-Track Clinic
260 East 161st Street
Bronx, NY 10451

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Research Information

In the News

Overdose Deaths Go Down Citywide—But Rise Sharply in East Harlem

Chinazo Cunningham, M.D., M.S., and Shadi Nahvi, M.D., M.S., discuss barriers to addiction treatment and the social and economic reasons contributing to increased overdose deaths in some lower-income areas of New York City. Dr. Cunningham is associate chief of the division of general internal medicine at Einstein and Montefiore; Dr. Nahvi is associate professor of medicine and of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Einstein.

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