Elisha M. Wachman, MD
Associate Professor
Boston University Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine

MD, Boston University School of Medicine
BS, Georgetown University

Pronouns: she/her/hers

Dr. Wachman is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the BU Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine and attending neonatologist at Boston Medical Center (BMC). She is currently the Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Pediatrics at BMC, and the Co-Director of the BU CTSI Integrated Pilot Grant Award Program. She is a nationally recognized clinical and translational researcher with expertise in neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome (NOWS) and substance use disorders in pregnancy. Her specific research interests include the genetics and epigenetics of NOWS, treatments for opioid use disorder (OUD) in pregnancy, and the use of non-pharmacologic care methods to improve NOWS outcomes. She is currently the principal investigator on two NIH studies examining opioid use disorder in pregnancy, genetic markers, and long-term maternal and infant outcomes. She also leads several other NIH and foundation funded studies involving pregnant individuals with OUD / infants with NOWS.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility

My research and clinical focus is on pregnant individuals with substance use disorders, a historically marginalized population who often have histories of trauma, psychiatric co-morbidities and incarceration. I have strived to create patient-centered approaches to care and to decrease stigma for this population. This includes developing a family-centered delivery experience, and continual education of trainees and staff about caring for individuals with substance use disorders in a non-stigmatized manner. In addition, I have strived for diversity in my research staff and mentees. The majority of my mentees have been women, many from underrepresented backgrounds.

Boston University
Clinical and Translational Science Institute
Integrated Pilot Grant Award Program

Association of maternal, fetal and placental biomarkers with neonatal neuroimaging and development following in-utero opioid exposure
09/01/2023 - 08/31/2026 (PI)
National Institutes of Health/DHHS/NIH

Account: Neonatal Withdrawal Assessment Tool: Validation of a Novel Tool for Neonatal Sedation and Withdrawal Management
07/01/2023 - 06/30/2026 (PI)
Gerber Foundation

MATernaL and Infant NetworK to Understand Outcomes Associated with Treatment for Opioid…
03/01/2020 - 07/31/2024 (PI)
Task Force for Global Health Centers for Disease

Safety, Efficacy, Pharmacokinetics, and Pharmacogenomics of Extended-Release Naltrexone in Pregnant Women - Administrative Supplement
06/01/2022 - 05/31/2024 (PI)
Department of Health & Human Services

Safety, pharmacokinetics and efficacy of extended-release naltrexone in pregnant women with…
06/01/2020 - 05/31/2024 (PI)
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development/NIH/DHHS

Effects of prenatal opioid exposure on placental DNA methylation and expression
03/01/2022 - 02/29/2024 (PI)
March of Dimes

The National Drug Abuse Clinical Trials Network: New England Consortium Node CTN-0080 / Medication Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder in Expectant Mothers (MOMS)
06/01/2020 - 02/29/2024 (PI)
Yale University School of Medicine National Institute o

SUID-Reducing Infant Care Practices Among Opioid-Exposed Newborns
03/01/2020 - 06/30/2023 (PI)
American SIDS Institute

The National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN-0080
06/01/2019 - 05/31/2021 (PI)
McLean Hospital National Institute o

Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome (NAS) Research and Quality Improvement Program
12/14/2016 - 08/31/2018 (PI)
Massachusetts Health Policy Commission


Publications listed below are automatically derived from MEDLINE/PubMed and other sources, which might result in incorrect or missing publications. Faculty can login to make corrections and additions.

iCite Analysis       Copy PMIDs To Clipboard

  1. Sabharwal V, Taglauer E, Demos R, Snyder-Cappione J, Shaik-Dasthagirisaheb YB, Parker-Kelleher SP, Hunnewell J, Boateng J, Clark K, Yuen R, Barnett ED, Wachman EM, Yarrington C. Comparison of anti-SARS-CoV-2 specific antibody signatures in maternal and infant blood after COVID-19 infection versus COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy. Am J Perinatol. 2023 Sep 29.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37774748
  2. Borrelli KN, Wingfield KK, Yao EJ, Zamorano CA, Sena KD, Beierle JA, Roos MA, Zhang H, Wachman EM, Bryant CD. Decreased myelin-related gene expression in the nucleus accumbens during spontaneous neonatal opioid withdrawal in the absence of long-term behavioral effects in adult outbred CFW mice. Neuropharmacology. 2023 Sep 27; 240:109732.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37774943; DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2023.109732;
  3. Deflorimonte C, Glissendorf V, Hofer J, Cai A, Iannella N, Boateng JO, Carter G, Saia KA, Jones HE, Wachman EM. National Provider Survey: Use of Naltrexone for Pregnant Individuals with Substance Use Disorders. J Addict Med. 2023 Sep 20.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37729010
  4. Borrelli KN, Wingfield KK, Yao EJ, Zamorano CA, Sena KD, Beierle JA, Roos MA, Zhang H, Wachman EM, Bryant CD. Decreased myelin-related gene expression in the nucleus accumbens during spontaneous neonatal opioid withdrawal in the absence of long-term behavioral effects in adult outbred CFW mice. bioRxiv. 2023 Aug 07.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37609129; PMCID: PMC10441327; DOI: 10.1101/2023.08.04.552033;
  5. Morrison TM, Standish KR, Wanar A, Crowell L, Safon CB, Colvin BN, Friedman H, Schiff DM, Wachman EM, Colson ER, Drainoni ML, Parker MG. Drivers of decision-making regarding infant sleep practices among mothers with opioid use disorder. J Perinatol. 2023 Jul; 43(7):923-929.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37270538
  6. Holland E, Gibbs L, Spence NZ, Young M, Werler MM, Guang Z, Saia K, Bateman BT, Achu R, Wachman EM. A comparison of postpartum opioid consumption and opioid discharge prescriptions among opioid-naïve patients and those with opioid use disorder. Am J Obstet Gynecol MFM. 2023 Aug; 5(8):101025.View Related Profiles. PMID: 37211090
  7. Miele K, Kim SY, Jones R, Rembert JH, Wachman EM, Shrestha H, Henninger ML, Kimes TM, Schneider PD, Sivaloganathan V, Sward KA, Deshmukh VG, Sanjuan PM, Maxwell JR, Seligman NS, Caveglia S, Louis JM, Wright T, Bennett CC, Green C, George N, Gosdin L, Tran EL, Meaney-Delman D, Gilboa SM. Medication for Opioid Use Disorder During Pregnancy - Maternal and Infant Network to Understand Outcomes Associated with Use of Medication for Opioid Use Disorder During Pregnancy (MAT-LINK), 2014-2021. MMWR Surveill Summ. 2023 May 05; 72(3):1-14. PMID: 37130060; PMCID: PMC10154076; DOI: 10.15585/mmwr.ss7203a1;
  8. Kropp FB, Smid MC, Lofwall MR, Wachman EM, Martin PR, Murphy SM, Wilder CM, Winhusen TJ. Collaborative care programs for pregnant and postpartum individuals with opioid use disorder: Organizational characteristics of sites participating in the NIDA CTN0080 MOMs study. J Subst Use Addict Treat. 2023 Jun; 149:209030. PMID: 37023858; PMCID: PMC10249488; DOI: 10.1016/j.josat.2023.209030;
  9. Bektas G, Soderborg T, Slater C, Agarwal J, Racioppi M, Hogan T, Werler MM, Wachman EM. The Neonatal Withdrawal Assessment Tool (NWAT): pilot inter-rater reliability and content validity. J Perinatol. 2023 Jul; 43(7):930-935.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36914798
  10. Sabharwal V, Demos R, Snyder-Cappione J, Parker SE, Shaik-Dasthagirisaheb Y, Hunnewell J, Boateng J, Clarke K, Yuen R, Barnett E, Yarrington C, Taglauer E, Wachman EM. Cytokine levels in maternal and infant blood after COVID-19 vaccination during pregnancy in comparison with unvaccinated controls. J Reprod Immunol. 2023 Mar; 156:103821.View Related Profiles. PMID: 36764228; PMCID: PMC9884398; DOI: 10.1016/j.jri.2023.103821;
Showing 10 of 75 results. Show More

This graph shows the total number of publications by year, by first, middle/unknown, or last author.

Bar chart showing 75 publications over 13 distinct years, with a maximum of 12 publications in 2021


Can New Medication Styles for Opioid Addiction Prevent Relapse in New Parents?

HealthCity 9/22/2022

COVID-19 infection during pregnancy causes high inflammation in newborns, study says

Study Finds 4/28/2022

Study shows how inflammation from COVID-19 during pregnancy could impact long-term infant health

News Medical 4/26/2022

Researchers discover how the placenta may be blocking SARS-CoV-2 transmission to babies during pregnancy

Medical Xpress 1/31/2022

Mandatory Reporting Law Is Harmful for Pregnant People with Substance Use Disorder

HealthCity 6/29/2021

Pregnant people infected with SARS-CoV-2 appear to be at higher risk of developing severe cases of COVID-19 than infected people who are not pregnant.

Technology.org 1/5/2021

Human Fetuses Can Contract SARS-CoV-2, but It’s Rare

The Scientist 1/1/2021

Researchers Identify Proteins That Prevent COVID-19 Transmission Through the Placenta

HealthCity 9/15/2020

Implementing Eat, Sleep, Console Model Improves Neonatal Opioid Withdrawal Syndrome Outcomes

HealthCity 9/2/2020

Pilot Study: Treating Opioid Use Disorder with Naltrexone During Pregnancy Shows Promise

MultiBrief Exclusive 9/19/2019

Using Naltrexone During Pregnancy Can Benefit Infants, Moms

The Fix 8/21/2019

BMC: Naltrexone Promising Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder During Pregnancy

Essential Hospitals 8/14/2019

Naltrexone May Offer Advantages Over Buprenorphine to Treat Opioid Use Disorder During Pregnancy

HealthCity 8/13/2019

Promotion to Associate Professor for 18 Medical Campus Faculty

BU Today 6/14/2019

‘Hugs Not Drugs’ for Opioid-Dependent Newborns

MedPage Today 4/30/2019

To The Moon And Back, SENSE Host Newborne Substance Abuse Event

Wicked Local Carve 4/23/2019

Buprenorphine Optimal Treatment For Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome

Healio 2/2/2019

Buprenorphine May Best Morphine for Treating NAS

MedPage Today 1/22/2019

‘I Know I Can Do It’: New Hampshire Moms In Recovery Learn New Methods Of Supporting Babies

The Boston Globe 10/15/2018

Amid opioid crisis, treatment for dependent infants evolves

The Columbian 8/27/2018

Babies Born Dependent On Opioids Need Touch, Not Tech

WBUR 8/16/2018

2021 Boston Combined Residency Program in Pediatrics: Jerome Klein Teaching Excellence Award
2018 America's Essential Hospitals Gage Award
In addition to these self-described keywords below, a list of MeSH based concepts is available here.

Neonatal Opioid Withdrawal Syndrome
Substance Use Disorders

I am an Associate Professor of Pediatrics and Director of Pediatric Academic Research at BUSM/BMC. My research expertise is in substance use disorders in pregnancy and neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome, with most of my work focused on clinical and translational research.

Available to Mentor as: (Review Mentor Role Definitions):
  • Advisor
  • Career Mentor
  • Co-Mentor or Peer Mentor
  • Project Mentor
  • Research / Scholarly Mentor
Contact for Mentoring:
  • Email (see 'Contact Info')

801 Albany Street, Room 2003
Boston MA 02119
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