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Dr. Marla Shapiro

Professor, Department of Family and Community Medicine | Preventive Medicine

Dr. Shapiro was named a member of the Order of Canada, for contributions as a family physician and trusted source of health information.

Languages : English


Dr. Shapiro completed medical school at McGill University and trained at the University of Toronto for her Masters of Health Science in Community Health and Epidemiology. She trained in Family Medicine and is certified by the Canadian College of Family Practice. She concluded her specialty training in Preventive Medicine and Public Health, receiving her Fellowship from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. She holds a Fellowship in Family Medicine and is a North American Menopause Society credentialed menopause specialist.Since 2000, Dr. Shapiro has been the Health and Medical Expert for CANADA AM. In addition to her weekly appearances on CANADA AM, Dr. Shapiro is seen regularly on CTV News Channel and as the medical consultant on CTV National News. In 2012, she hosted CTV News Channel’s DR. MARLA & FRIENDS, a weekly series examining the most current and news-driven medical topics and stories. In addition, Dr. Shapiro has contributes topical, medical investigative documentaries for CTV’s W5, Canada’s most-watched documentary series. In 2003, she began hosting BALANCE: TELEVISION FOR LIVING WELL, a refreshing daily health and lifestyle show seen across North American households.In 2015, Dr. Shapiro was named a member of the Order of Canada, for contributions as a family physician and trusted source of health information.Dr. Shapiro has written a regular column for The Globe and Mail. She currently writes her weekly blog on the website. Dr. Shapiro is the Founding Editor of ParentsCanada Magazine.Additionally, Dr. Shapiro is a member of several committees and advisory boards including the Board for the Canadian Foundation for Women and Health, Research Canada and The North American Menopause Society. She was on the original Board of The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer having stepped down after 6 years.


Dr. Marla: Can light therapy help ward off jet lag?
CTV News

February 09, 2016

Light is important for our sense of well-being. In fact,light influences brain function, impacts circadian rhythm, as well as sleep and sleep and arousal. We have evolved to have our physiology and behaviour rhythms consistent with our light dark cycles.The way in which we do this is that we actually synchronize with our retina photoreceptors in our retina...

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Dr. Marla: Women turning to compounded hormones to battle menopause

October 06, 2015

A study surveying American women showed that one third of women who take hormones at menopause are using compounded hormones. Of the reasons cited for choosing compounded over approved hormone therapy options is respondents thinking hormones are safer and offer more benefits than approved therapies...

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CTV News' Dr. Marla Shapiro named to Order of Canada
CTV News

July 01, 2015

Dr. Marla Shapiro has been named a Member of the Order of Canada for her contributions as a family physician and trusted source of health information.One of this country’s highest civilian honours, the Order of Canada recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community, and service to the nation

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Dr. Marla Shapiro: Clearing up meningitis vaccine confusion
CTV News

April 01, 2014

Meningitis vaccines- when I bring the topic up in my office, that there is a new vaccine, my patients are confused. And rightly so. While the group of diseases known as meningitis all have the same infection of the layer of the brain called the meninges, there are different bacteria and viruses that can cause this disease. At 12 months we give kids meningitis C and in high school we give them a quadrivalent meningitis vaccine- meaning there are 4 different types of strains that can cause meningits...

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Dr. Marla Shapiro: Cancer terminology can sway treatment
CTV News

August 27, 2013

While we quote the life time risk of breast cancer as 1 in 9, it is important to remember that breast cancer is not one disease but a host of different diseases that share a common anatomical site of origin- the breast. As the authors in a new report in the Archives of Internal Medicine point out- ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) is a pre-invasive malignancy of the breast and is diagnosed in more than 50,000 women a year in the United States. The important adjective here is PRE INVASIVE...

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Update on herpes zoster vaccination
Canadian Family Physician

2011Herpes zoster results from reactivation of the varicella-zoster virus; postherpetic neuralgia (PHN) is its most common and serious complication. The incidence of PHN after HZ is directly related to age, with 50% of affected individuals older than 60 years experiencing persistent and unrelieved pain...

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Multiple-Component Remediation for Developmental Reading Disabilities: IQ, Socioeconomic Status, and Race as Factors in Remedial Outcome
Journal of Learning Disabilities

2010Results from a controlled evaluation of remedial reading interventions are reported: 279 young disabled readers were randomly assigned to a program according to a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial design (IQ, socioeconomic status [SES], and race). The effectiveness of two multiple-component intervention programs for children with reading disabilities (PHAB + RAVE-O; PHAB + WIST) was evaluated against alternate (CSS, MATH) and phonological control programs...

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Physician response to informed consent regulations for randomized clinical trials

2006To improve our understanding of physician reluctance to participate in randomized clinical trials, we examined physician responses to the regulation of obtaining written informed consent. Between June 1984 and February 1985 a purposive sample of 170 breast cancer specialists from eight countries completed a self-administered questionnaire and follow-up interview...

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Physicians' perception of personal risk of HIV infection and AIDS through occupational exposure.

1990Physicians' response to acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) is poorly understood and often attributed to fear of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection through occupational exposure. We surveyed 268 physicians from three geographic regions in North American with different specialties and responsibilities for HIV-positive patients...

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Treatment of brain tumors in children is associated with abnormal MR spectroscopic ratios in brain tissue remote from the tumor site.
American Journal of Neuroradiology

1998Children who have brain tumors are at risk for a variety of treatment-related sequelae, including neuropsychological and cognitive impairment, neurologic deficits, and neuroendocrinologic disturbances. We sought to determine the value of proton MR spectroscopy in assessing brain tissue remote from the tumor site to ascertain the effects of chemotherapy and radiation treatment in these patients...

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Area of Expertise


Community Health



Family Medicine




Vaccine Hesitancy

Women's Health


President Elect of The North American Menopause Society


Health and Wellness



University of Toronto : Epidemiology

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