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C. Neill Epperson, MD

C. Neill Epperson, MD Physician

Director, Penn Center for Women's Behavioral Wellness Professor of Psychiatry Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology

Dr. Epperson is employed by Penn Medicine.

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About Dr. C. Neill Epperson

Recognized by Best Doctors in America 2015 - 2018

Clinical Specialties


  • Psychiatry

Programs & Centers:

Board Certification:

  • Psychiatry, 1999

Description of Clinical Expertise

Dr. Epperson has over 20 years experience in the treatment of mood and behavioral disorders across the female reproductive life cycle. Specifically, she has expertise in the assessment and treatment of premenstrual dysphoric disorder, premenstrual worsening of depression and bipolar disorder, perinatal psychiatric disorders, mood disorders due to hormonal treatments, and perimenopausal mood disturbances. Dr. Epperson also treats women with adjustment difficulties and post-traumatic stress due to pregnancy complications or loss and consults with peri- and early post-menopausal women with cognitive complaints. The Penn Center for Women's Behavioral Wellness, under the direction of Dr. Epperson, includes psychologists and psychiatrists with expertise in women's mental health.

Practice Locations and Appointments

Insurance Accepted

  • OPR Medicare
  • OPR New Jersey Medicaid
  • OPR Pennsylvania Medicaid

Education and Training

Medical School: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Residency: Bridgeport Hospital
Residency: Yale-Pediatrics


Association for the Advancement of Science, International Member, American Psychiatric Association, International Member, Association for Women Psychiatrists, National Member, Biobehavioral Mechanism of Stress, Hormones and Health NIH Review Committee, National Member, International Society for Psychoneuroendocrinology, International Member, International Society for Research on Premenstrual Disorders, International Member, Marce Society, International Member, North American Menopause Society (NAMS), National Member, Society for Biological Psychiatry, International

Hospital Affiliation

Dr. Epperson is employed by Penn Medicine.

Hospital Privileges:

  • Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania: Has privileges to treat patients in the hospital.
  • Pennsylvania Hospital: Has privileges to treat patients in the hospital.


Description of Research Expertise:

Research Interest: The overarching goal of Dr. Epperson's research has been the neuroendocrinology of mood, behavior, and cognition across the female life span. To this end, her laboratory utilizes a wide range of scientific tools, including brain imaging, psychophysiology, hormone treatment, amino acid depletion and pharmacologic challenge.

Key Words:
Women's Health

Research Techniques:
Hormone and pharmacologic challenges

Research Summary The Epperson laboratory is housed in the Penn Center for Women's Behavioral Wellness at 3535 Market Street and is affiliated with the Departments of Psychiatry, Obstetrics and Gynecology and Radiology. Doctoral and post-doctoral students have the opportunity to participate in and conduct translational neuroscience studies focusing on the neuroendocrinology of affective and cognitive disorders in women. Another strong area of emphasis is the study of sex differences in neuropsychiatric, cognitive and substance use disorders.

Dr. Epperson also co-directs the Center for the Study of Sex and Gender in Behavioral Health with Dr. Tracy Bale of the School of Veterinary Medicine. The Epperson laboratory has recently been awarded a P50 from the Office of Research on Women's Health and the National Institute of Mental Health to study the impact of prepubertal adversity on the sex bias for affective disorders across the female lifespan. This center grant is composed of two human subjects projects (Epperson laboratory) and one rodent study (conducted in NGG faculty member Dr. Tracy Bale's laboratory at the Penn School of Veterinary Medicine). The P50 provides opportunities for interested trainees to be involved with bench to bedside research. The Epperson laboratory is ideal for students interested in brain imaging (fMRI & 1H-MRS), psychophysiology and stress reactivity in women's health. The Center for the Study of Sex and Gender in Behavioral Health also recently became the recipient of a Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women's Health (BIRCWH) award for the Office of Research on Women's Health (within the NIH). Drs. Epperson and Bale recently named two BIRCWH scholars who will receive two years of salary support and protected research time.

Selected Publications:

Epperson CN, Kim DR, Bale TL: Estradiol modulation of monoamine metabolism: One possible mechanism underlying sex differences in risk for depression and dementia JAMA Psychiatry : 2014.

Hantsoo L, Czarkowski KA, Child J, Howes C, Epperson CN: Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and endothelial function in women J Womens Health : 2014.

Epperson CN, Sammel MD, Freeman EW: Menopause effects on verbal memory: Findings from a longitudinal community cohort J Clinical Endocrinol Metab 98 (9): 3829-38,2013.

Gur TL, Kim DR, Epperson, CN.: Central nervous system effects of prenatal selective serotonin reputake inhibitors: sensing the signal through the noise. Psychopharmacology 227 (4): 567-582,2013.

Epperson, CN: Premenstrual dysphoric disorder and the brain Am J Psychiatry 170 (3): 248-252,2013.

Epperson CN, Toll B, Wu R, Amin Z, Czarkowski KA, Jatlow P, Mazure CM, O'Malley SS: Exploring the Impact of gender and reproductive status on outcomes in a randomized clinical trial of naltroxone augmentation of nicotine patch Drug and Alcohol Dependence : 2010.

Epperson CN: Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder Encyclopedia of Psychopharmacology DOI 10.1007/978-3-540-68706-1 : 2010.

Forray A, Focseneanu M, Pittman B, McDougle CJ, Epperson CN: Onset and exacerbation of obsessive-compulsive disorder in pregnancy and the postpartum period Journal of Clinical Psychiatry : 2010.

Kim DR, O'Reardon JP, Epperson CN: Guidelines for the Management of Depression During Pregnancy Current Psychiatry Republ : 2010.

L Wakil, CN Epperson, J Gonzalez, JP O'Reardon, DR Kim: Neonatal outcomes with the use of lamotrigine for bipolar disorder in pregnancy and breastfeeding: A case series and review of the literature Psychopharmacology Bulletin 42 : 91-98,2009.

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Academic Contact Info

3535 Market Street, 3rd Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19104-3309
Phone: (215) 573-8871
Patient appointments: 800-789-7366 (PENN)