MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Lawrence H. Phillips II, M.D., 1974 graduate of the West Virginia University School of Medicine, will be recognized as the school’s Distinguished Alumnus as part of the annual Alumni Weekend Sept. 30 and Oct. 1.

Dr. Phillips is a nationally known clinician and researcher specializing in the practice of electrodiagnostic and neuromuscular medicine. He joined the faculty of the University of Virginia School of Medicine in 1981 and is currently the vice chair of the Department of Neurology. He is the medical director of the Lou Gehrig’s disease clinic at the University of Virginia and co-director of the Muscular Dystrophy Association clinic. 

Phillips research focuses on the practice of testing the electrical activity of muscles called electromyography (EMG); intraoperative neurophysiological monitoring to identify changes in brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerve function; and the epidemiology of neuromuscular diseases, in particular myasthenia gravis, where the body produces antibodies that block the muscle cells from receiving messages from the nerve cell.

“We are pleased to welcome Dr. Phillips back to his medical school alma mater to celebrate his achievements as a Distinguished Alumnus,” Arthur J. Ross III, M.D., M.B.A., dean of the WVU School of Medicine, said. “Dr. Phillips’ work has had a significant impact on the medical treatment of neuromuscular diseases. Through his pioneering efforts, he has discovered knowledge which has helped us understand more about disorders of muscles and nerves and thereby provide better care to patients.”

Born in Clarksburg and raised in Weirton, Phillips received his bachelor’s degree in biology from Princeton University in 1970 and his medical degree from WVU in 1974. He completed an internship in internal medicine at the University of Wisconsin in 1975 and a neurology residency at the Mayo Clinic-Rochester in 1978. Phillips joined the staff of the Mayo Clinic after a year of clinical neurophysiology fellowship with Dr. E.H. Lambert, an early pioneer in EMG.

Phillips is editor-in-chief of “Muscle and Nerve,” an international and interdisciplinary publication devoted to publishing important findings on neuromuscular disorders and treatment options.

He will receive the Distinguished Alumnus Award at the Alumni Banquet, which will be at 7:30 p.m. on Sept. 30 at the Ramada Inn in Morgantown. Phillips will also discuss “ALS in Musicians” at the Pat A. Tuckwiller Memorial Seminar, which will be from 8 to 10 a.m. on Oct. 1.

The Distinguished Alumnus Award was established in 1984 to honor alumni “whose distinguished careers and unselfish contributions to society have enhanced the prestige of the School of Medicine and helped to upgrade the quality of healthcare.”

For more information: Amy Johns, HSC News Service, 304-293-7087
dlc: 09-30-11