Departments: Neurology - Adjunct Instructor
- American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology (Special Qualification in Child Neurology)
- American Board of Pediatrics (Pediatrics)
- American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology (Sub: Neuromuscular Medicine)
- American Board of Electrodiagnostic Medicine
Dr. Ai Sakonju completed both her pediatric internship and pediatric neurology chief residency at the Johns Hopkins Hospital after receiving her medical degree from the University Of Utah School Of Medicine. This was followed by fellowship training in Neurophysiology and Neuromuscular disease with mentors Mark Bromberg, MD, PhD, and Kathryn Swoboda, MD, with the University of Utah, Dept. of Neurology. Prior to medical training and neurology residency, she majored in Biological Sciences with focus in Genetics at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.
Currently an Assistant Professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at the University of Utah School of Medicine, Dr. Sakonju sees general neurology patients as well as patients with more rare disorders. She has particular expertise in diagnosing and managing pediatric neuromuscular diseases and is one of only a handful of child neurologists in the U.S. with formal subspecialty training in electrophysiology with focus in nerve conduction and needle EMG studies used in evaluation of peripheral nerve and muscle diseases. To facilitate obtaining accurate data and ensure the comfort of patients, she has sedation privileges and also dedicates clinic time at least twice monthly for sedated electrodiagnostic studies on Mondays. As a service to patients, she has Friday morning clinics at the Clinical Neurosciences Center in parallel with the Muscular Dystrophy Association clinic in order to enroll patients for MDA services including evaluation for braces and financial provision for wheelchairs. She is also one of the neurologists involved in the Pediatric Motor Disorders Research Program with interest in evaluation of children with neurotransmitter disorders and dystonias. Dr. Sakonju’s other special focus is in Spinal Muscular Atrophy patients with clinical research involvement, electrodiagnostic evaluation, and multi-specialty management.
In her spare time, she enjoys being with family, cooking and restaurant critiquing, music, sewing, knitting, and travel.