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Tony Morris was born in Edinburgh in 1946. He was educated at Salford Grammar School and Manchester University, where he undertook an intercalated BSc (Hons) degree in Physiology. As he was still on the youthful side, he undertook an MSc in Physiology, investigating peptide analogues of Pentagastrin on cats' stomach and pancreas. In December 1969 he completed his medical degree.
Dr Morris became a house surgeon on the Professorial Surgical Unit, and house physician on the Professorial Gastroenterology Unit at the Manchester Royal Infirmary. Here he worked for Professor H T Howat, Dr R Holmes, and Dr L A Turnberg. He then became the Senior House Officer on the same unit until he passed the MRCP (UK) in 1972. After this, he spent two and a half years on the medical registrar rotation at the Whittington and University College Hospitals, London.
In 1974, Dr Morris was appointed as Professor Turnberg's (now Lord Turnberg) Lecturer (Hon Senior Registrar) at Hope Hospital, Manchester, England. During this time he worked on the CT appearances of liver disease, as well as a major study on the autonomic control of small bowel function in man, which was the subject of his MD thesis.
Dr Morris was granted a year of leave of absence to work in hepatology at the University of Pittsburgh with Professors R Lester and David H van Thiel.
Just prior to returning to the UK he was appointed in 1979 as Senior Lecturer in Medicine at the University of Liverpool, and Honorary Consultant Physician and Gastroenterologist at the Walton Hospital. In 1985, the year he was elected to Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians, he moved to the Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals to replace Richard McConnell and join Ian Gilmore.
Since this period, Dr Morris has continued his interest in hollow organ gastroenterology and therapeutic endoscopy.
He has been Chairman of the Hospital Medical Board on two occasions, and has been Clinical Director of Gastroenterology for the last five years. In addition, he has been on the council of the BSG three times, once as Vice President (Endoscopy).
Dr Morris is currently Chairman of the Joint Advisory Group on Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.
He has published over 70 papers and a similar number of abstracts, as well as three books.
Dr Morris has been married for 28 years to Sheila, a nurse. They have two sons in their twenties of whom he is immensely proud.
He has a narrow boat, which is his salvation from stress. He also gets his kicks from driving formula Ford racing cars, which is getting more difficult as it is too tight a fit!
- What made you decide to become a gastroenterologist?
- I wanted to be a cardiac surgeon, but when wanting to delay qualifying in medicine I undertook a year's research for an MSc in physiology, under the supervision of the then Dr H T Howat (ex-President of the BSG, pancreatologist, and recently deceased).
- Who was the teacher you admired the most?
- Other than Harry Howat, a chest physician in Blackpool called Len Capper, who went to great lengths to find cases for us. He would get six cases of lung cancer with different presentations or six patients with a pleural effusion, all from different causes. I have never managed to emulate his enthusiasm despite trying hard!
- What is the most important fact that you have discovered?
- Work expands to fit the time that is not available! Really, I suppose my work with Lord Turnberg on autonomic control of small bowel function in man.
- What is your unfulfilled ambition?
- Apart from dating Claudia Schiffer, to endoscope a patient from mouth to anus in one go. I have got from mouth to mid-transverse colon with a push enteroscope and a helpful surgeon.
- What is your greatest regret?
- That I never learned to play a musical instrument.
- How do you relax?
- On my 40-foot narrow boat called "Morris Dancer".
- What is your favorite sport?
- Formula Ford car racing.
- What is your best place in the world?
- The Great Barrier Reef.
- What is your favorite film?
- Any of the Marx brothers.
- What car do you drive?
- Saab Turbo.
- What is your best electronic 'toy'?
- My hand-held GPS in case I get lost.
- What book are you reading at the moment?
- "Killing Dragons".
- Why did you get in involved in GastroHep.com?
- You are so persistent!