The AANEM’s Scientific Impact Award recognizes mid-career members for serving as a first author, second author, or senior author on a published paper in a national or international peer-reviewed, indexed journal within the past 2 years. Yuebing Li, MD, PhD, has been named this year’s neurology winner for serving as a first author on a July 2017 article in Muscle & Nerve
titled “Optimizing Muscle Selection for Electromyography in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis.” The authors included Suma Babu, MD, MPH; Erik P Pioro, MD, PhD; Jianbo Li, PhD; and Yuebing Li, MD, PhD.
The authors compared the yield of limb and thoracic paraspinal muscle examination for revealing lower motor neuron (LMN) dysfunction on electromyography (EMG) in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in a retrospective review of 354 patients with clinically definite or probable ALS. Seventeen limb muscles and thoracic paraspinal muscles were evaluated for the presence of both active and chronic denervation. The authors found that the distal limb muscles showed the highest EDX sensitivities of LMN dysfunction in ALS regardless of onset region and diagnostic certainty at the time of diagnosis, that EDX yield was higher in muscles from the onset limb, that noncontiguous spread of lower motor neuron degeneration is present in ALS, and optimally selected 6 upper and 5 lower extremity muscles yielded >98% of potential positive cervical or lumbosacral segments. They concluded that an algorithmic approach to needle EMG in ALS based on pretest probability of individual muscles optimizes electrodiagnostic yield, thus possibly minimizing test duration and patient discomfort.
Dr. Li has served as a staff neurologist in the NM Center at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation since 2012. He has been a member of AANEM since 2010 and currently serves on the AANEM’s EDX Self-Assessment Exam Committee. Dr. Li has also served as a member of the Quality Measures Subcommittee, the Professional Practice Committee and the NM Self-Assessment Exam Committee. Although he has a large practice that includes patients with various NM disorders, Dr. Li has a special interest in the diagnosis and treatment of myasthenia gravis. He serves as a member of the Medical and Scientific Advisory Board for the Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America (MGFA). He serves as the current Chair of the Myasthenia Gravis Registry Oversight Committee for MGFA. He was the recipient of Doctor of the Year Award from MGFA in 2017.
“I enjoy a lot of things AANEM offers. In particular, I love the constant opportunities of learning new things by interacting with colleagues via conferences, symposiums, and committee meetings,” said Dr. Li.
He was inspired early in life to pursue a career in medicine.
“My family background forced me to choose a medical career. Too many people in my family died prematurely in their life due to various illnesses. Some did not receive proper healthcare. I wanted family members and myself to live longer, and I wanted to help others,” he said.
Dr. Li has published numerous articles on NM medicine and neurology, and received many teaching awards including the award for Neurology Teacher of the Year at Cleveland Clinic in 2014 and 2019. He is a recipient of the AB Baker Teacher Recognition Award from American Academy of Neurology in 2016. He has also been voted one of the best doctors by Best Doctors of America.
Dr. Li stressed the importance of getting involved early and often in your career if you wish to make an impact that stretches beyond your practice.
“Please keep on networking and volunteering, and avoid working in isolation. Your opportunity of making an impact in your chosen field will come as long as you are studious and persistent,” he said.
Dr. Li completed his neurology residency at University of Cincinnati in 2002, where he was elected chief resident. This was followed by a 1-year fellowship in clinical neurophysiology that was also at the University of Cincinnati. He is board certified in neurology and EDX medicine. Dr. Li practiced at Lehigh Valley Physician Group-Lehigh Neurology as a NM specialist for 9 years before joining Cleveland Clinic.