Department of
Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine

James W. Ibinson, MD, PhD

  • Associate Professor
  • Chief of Anesthesiology, VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System

Education & Training

  • The Ohio State University, BS, Chemical Engineering
  • The Ohio State University School of Medicine, MD
  • The Ohio State University, PhD, Biomedical Engineering
  • University of Pittsburgh Department of Anesthesiology, T32 Postdoctoral Research Fellowship

Representative Publications

​Dr. Ibinson's publications can be reviewed through the National Library of Medicine's publication database.

Research, clinical, and/or academic interests

Dr. Ibinson's research has focused on using blood-oxygen-level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging (BOLD fMRI) to address perioperative issues, with special attention on pain processing and cognitive dysfunction.  His early efforts centered on creating an fMRI program to probe brain activity during accommodation to painful stimuli.  He then focused on developing imaging techniques to describe the neurovascular response to painful stimulation in healthy subjects.  From this, it became clear that a task-based functional imaging approach was suboptimal for chronic pain research, so he shifted his focus to resting-state scanning, which culminated in several works optimizing the application of functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (fcMRI) to the study of pain.  Dr. Ibinson's clinical practice in both general and regional anesthesiology has allowed insight into the importance of controlling pain in the perioperative period and has provided a deep understanding of the neurobiology involved in the sensation of pain.

The primary members of Dr. Ibinson's lab include Principal Investigator Jim Ibinson, MD, PhD; Co-investigator Keith Vogt, MD, PhD; and Graduate Student Chris Becker, MA. Mentorship is provided by Howard Aizenstein MD, PhD (Department of Psychiatry and PI of the Geriatric Psychiatry Neuroimaging Lab); Brian Williams, MD; and Ajay Wasan, MD.

Investigating the Link between Pre-clinical Alzheimer’s Disease and Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction Using Functional Neuroimaging

Animal models suggest that postoperative cognitive dysfunction may be more prevalent in those with pre-clinical Alzheimer’s disease. This work uses perioperative functional imaging and cerebral spinal fluid analysis to preliminarily establish if they are related.

Quantifying the Neural Correlates of Postoperative Cognitive Dysfunction (POCD)

Neither the mechanism nor the key cerebral substrates of POCD have been definitively determined in humans. The objective of this research is to generate pilot data supporting the hypothesis that functional neuroimaging can detect the neural correlates of POCD and quantify the changes in brain function and/or morphology over time.