Professor Polkey is a chest physician with 25 years of experience. He trained at the University of Bristol and, after qualification, at several hospitals in London.
He obtained his own thesis, on the study of the respiratory muscles, from Kings College London under the supervision of Professor John Moxham and Professor Sir Malcolm Green in 1998.
In 2000 he was appointed as a consultant physician to the Royal Brompton Hospital in London where he serves on the sleep and ventilation service. The Royal Brompton Hospital is a National centre of excellence for patients with lung disease in the UK. He is interested in all aspects of advanced lung disease which result in respiratory failure. Aside from COPD and sleep, he is particularly expert in weaning from invasive mechanical ventilation, rehabilitation and cachexia in lung disease and respiratory aspects of neurological disease such as ALS, adult onset Pompe’s and the management of chronic respiratory failure. He is also lead for the sleep service for NHS Highland which he manages both remotely and by personal visit 8 times annually.
Since 2007 he is also Professor of Respiratory Medicine at Imperial College and more recently Deputy Director of the Royal Brompton Hospital NIHR Respiratory Biomedical Research Unit. He has experience in acquiring and directing multicentre research grants and in PhD supervision and examination. He has published over 250 peer reviewed scientific articles.