A photo of Rhonda Szczesniak.

Rhonda D. Szczesniak, PhD

  • Member, Division of Biostatistics and Epidemiology
  • Professor, UC Department of Pediatrics
  • UC Department of Environmental Health; UC Department of Mathematical Sciences



My research interests include predictive modeling, data management / coordination and medical monitoring, lung diseases and disorders, biomarker discovery and longitudinal data analysis. In my research lab, the goals of my team include designing and analyzing medical monitoring investigations as well as incorporating geo- and bio-markers for customized, enhanced prediction / early detection of swift disease progression.

Some of the most notable discoveries made at my lab include identifying pediatric phenotypes of rapid lung disease progression using the U.S. Cystic Fibrosis Registry and the geo- and bio-marker-informed prediction modeling of rapid lung disease progression.

I was led to my research interests by witnessing how certain things change over time and determining why things transform. This is why I pursued statistics in my graduate studies at the University of Kentucky.

As my career progressed, I received a recognition for biostatistical contributions to cystic fibrosis research in the Journal of Cystic Fibrosis in April 2019. I have also held reviewer positions on grant award panels, and I hold a membership in the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation Patient Registry / Comparative Effectiveness Research Committee. My research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation and the LAM Foundation.

I have more than 15 years of experience in the biostatistics field, and I first started working at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in 2007. Lastly, my research work has been published in a multitude of journals, including Statistical Methods in Medical Research, Statistics in Medicine, Journal of Religion and Health, Journal of Cystic Fibrosis, Journal of Diabetes Research, Annals of the American Thoracic Society, Chest, and American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

PhD: Statistics, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, 2007.

MS: Statistics, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY, 2005.

BS: Mathematics, Radford University, Radford, VA, 2003.


Cystic fibrosis; blood pressure; glycemic control

Services and Specialties

Pulmonary Medicine


Functional data analysis; longitudinal data analysis; medical monitoring; prediction

Research Areas

Biostatistics and Epidemiology


Early Identification of Candidates for Epilepsy Surgery: A Multicenter, Machine Learning, Prospective Validation Study. Wissel, BD; Greiner, HM; Glauser, TA; Pestian, JP; Ficker, DM; Cavitt, JL; Estofan, L; Holland-Bouley, KD; Mangano, FT; Szczesniak, RD; et al. Neurology. 2024; 102:e208048.

Social-environmental phenotypes of rapid cystic fibrosis lung disease progression in adolescents and young adults living in the United States. Palipana, AK; Vancil, A; Gecili, E; Rasnick, E; Ehrlich, D; Pestian, T; Andrinopoulou, ER; Afonso, PM; Keogh, RH; Ni, Y; et al. Environmental Advances. 2023; 14:100449.

Bayesian causal inference for observational studies with missingness in covariates and outcomes. Zang, H; Kim, HJ; Huang, B; Szczesniak, R. Biometrics. 2023; 79:3624-3636.

624 Evaluating precision medicine tools in cystic fibrosis for racial and ethnic fairness. Colegate, S; Palipana, A; Szczesniak, R; Brokamp, C. Journal of Cystic Fibrosis. 2023; 22:s335.

622 Hypercubes to identify key environmental exposures predictive of rapid cystic fibrosis lung disease progression. Cheng, Y; Gecili, E; Brokamp, C; Rasnick, E; Ryan, P; Szczesniak, R. Journal of Cystic Fibrosis. 2023; 22:s334.

618 Environmental exposures and spatiotemporal effects that characterize rapid lung function decline in a Midwest U.S. cystic fibrosis cohort. Gecili, E; Brokamp, C; Asar, O; Andrinopoulou, E; Brewington, J; Ryan, P; Szczesniak, R. Journal of Cystic Fibrosis. 2023; 22:s330.

Association of Pseudomonas aeruginosa infection stage with lung function trajectory in children with cystic fibrosis. Rosenfeld, M; Faino, AV; Qu, P; Onchiri, FM; Blue, EE; Collaco, JM; Gordon, WW; Szczesniak, R; Zhou, YH; Bamshad, MJ; et al. Journal of Cystic Fibrosis. 2023; 22:857-863.

Multilevel joint model of longitudinal continuous and binary outcomes for hierarchically structured data. Zhou, GC; Song, S; Szczesniak, RD. Statistics in Medicine. 2023; 42:2914-2927.

Median age of survival in the 80s! Is there sufficient evidence to believe it?. Stanojevic, S; Hamblett, N; Szczesniak, R; Cromwell, E; Keogh, R. Journal of Cystic Fibrosis. 2023; 22:592-594.

Lung Function Decline in Cystic Fibrosis: Impact of Data Availability and Modeling Strategies on Clinical Interpretations. Szczesniak, R; Andrinopoulou, ER; Su, W; Afonso, PM; Burgel, PR; Cromwell, E; Gecili, E; Ghulam, E; Goss, CH; Mayer-Hamblett, N; et al. Annals of the American Thoracic Society. 2023; 20:958-968.