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Thomas J. Whittaker, MS, JD, MD

Thomas Whittaker portrait
Professor, Ophthalmology

Associate Professor, Neurology

Associate Director, Ophthalmology

Professional Background

Dr. Whittaker is a Board-Certified Neuro-Ophthalmologist and one of the few in Kansas and Missouri. Dr. Whittaker earned his MS in Biomedical Engineering from Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI. He received his J.D. with distinction from the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law and his M.D. from the University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, KS. His internship and ophthalmology residency were done at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine and his neuro-ophthalmology fellowship was at the Dean McGee Eye Institute at the University of Oklahoma. He was Director of our Residency Program from 2005 until 2021, when he stepped down and is now Associate Director of the program. He has a joint appointment with the Department of Neurology, also at the University of Kansas.

Education and Training
  • BA, Biology, Rice University, Houston, TX
  • MS, Biomedical Engineering, Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI
  • JD, Law, Univ. of Missouri-Kansas City, Kansas City, MO
  • MD, Medicine, Univ. of Kansas-Medical Ctr., Kansas City, KS
  • Internship, Internal Medicine, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine
  • Residency, Ophthalmology, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine
  • Clinical Fellowship, Neuro-Ophthalmology, Dean McGee Eye Institute, University of Oklahoma
Licensure, Accreditations & Certifications
  • Board Certification, American Board of Ophthalmology
  • Medical Doctor, Kansas Board of Healing Arts
  • Medical Doctor, Missouri Board of Registration for the Healing Arts
Professional Affiliations
  • Kansas City Society of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology, Immediate Past President, 2021 - 2022
  • Kansas City Society of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology, President, 2020 - 2020
  • Kansas City Society of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology, Member, 2018 - Present
  • Kansas City Society of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology, Director, 2018 - Present
  • KUPI Surgical Cohort Peer Review Committee, Chair, 2018 - Present
  • North American Neuro-Ophthalmology Society, Preferred Practice Patterns Committee, Member, 2015 - Present
  • North American Neuro-Ophthalmology Society, Member, 2014 - Present

Research

Overview

Dr. Whittaker has been a Principal or Sub-Investigator on numerous studies and grants. He is currently a PI on two active studies. He has almost 20 peer-reviewed publications and is a popular speaker, with over 35 papers, posters and talks at local, national and international key specialty meetings.

Current Research and Grants
  • POINT: A Multicenter, Double-Blind, Parallel Group, Add-On, Superiority Study to Compare the Efficacy and Safety of Ponesimod to Placebo in Subjects with Active Relapsing Multiple Sclerosis who are Treated with Dimethyl Fumarate (Tecfidera) , University of Kansas