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Dr Burton had a wide exposure to medical practice whilst working in several regional centres and country hospitals in Queensland prior to commencing training
in Internal Medicine at The Royal Newcastle Hospital where he also entered Advanced Training in Neurology. His Australian training was supplemented by further training in Canada culminating in his becoming a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians and a member of the Australian Association of

An interest in clinical neuropharmacology was fostered during Dr Burton’s post-graduate training in Internal Medicine and Neurology when he systematically reviewed the techniques of clinical pharmacology applied to neurological disorders with Professor A J Smith (Professor of Clinical Pharmacology, University of Newcastle Medical School). Dr Burton continued those interests overseas after being appointed Research Fellow to DrDonald B Calne, Professor of Medicine (Clinical Neurosciences) at the University of British Columbia where he participated in the planning and execution of experimental drug studies of movement disorders, concentrating upon the pharmacology and therapeutics of Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor and the dystonias.

While based at the University of British Columbia Dr Burton collaborated with Dr A Eisen (Director of Clinical Neurophysiology, Vancouver General Hospital) in developing a novel neurophysiological technique for assessing spinal cord function.Dr Burton also participated in the planning and implementation of the initial scanning protocols of the newly-commissioned University of British Columbia/TRIUMF Positron Emission Tomography Research Unit.Dr Burton returned to the Hunter from Canada and was appointed Staff Regional Neurologist, and later as Consultant Neurologist (VMO),to the Hunter Area Health Service. Upon his return from overseas he helped to found the North-West Combined Neurology Meetings in New South Wales, was a founding member of the Movement Disorders Society of Australia and was later invited to join the foundation membership of Practice Guidelines Sub-committee of the Australian Association of Neurologists. Dr Burton was later elected Chairman of the John Hunter Hospital Medical Staff Council and also served as Chairman of the Executive of the Area Medical Staff Executive Council.

Over the past decade Dr Burton has pursued several initiatives which resulted in his private Neurology practice being the only location in Australia, other than some University teaching hospitals, where the following clinical neurophysiological services have been established.



Thermal sensory analysis

Thermal sensory analysis for the assessment of “small-fibre” neuropathies, spinothalamic tract lesions and limb pain syndromes.

Event-related potential studies

The provision of event-related potential studies to assist with the evaluation of dementia and other neurological disorders.

Vestibulo-ocular evoked potential studies

The use of vestibulo-ocular evoked potential studies as a novel method for assessing lesions affecting the otoliths, superior vestibular nerves, 4th cranial nerves or their intrinsic brainstem connections.

Quantitative reflex testing utilising

The establishment of quantitative reflex testing utilising the Bruel&Kjaer 4810 device to deliver precision tendon stimulation.