From Rods to Robots

Research & Innovation

Dr. Fabian has been involved in spine surgery related research since 1983, when he first began work in the Applied Neural Control Laboratories at Case Western Reserve University/University Hospitals, Cleveland, Ohio. His undergraduate work in spinal cord injury, including EMG (electromyographic) spectral frequency analysis, continued as a graduate student at Ohio State University and as a design engineer for Danninger Medical,Inc., designing custom spinal implants. He was responsible for designing multiple spinal implant systems for scoliosis (spinal deformity).

In 1996, he performed the first VATS (Video Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery) minimally invasive thoracic vertebrectomy in Hannover, Germany, as an AO/ ASIF International Fellow.

Since 1986, Dr. Fabian has been a consultant to several spinal implant companies, serving on the surgeon design team of multiple cervical, thoracic and lumbar implants. He was an early adopter of minimally invasive (MIS) surgical techniques and the first surgeon to perform microendoscopic discectomy (MED) surgery in Cleveland, Ohio.

In 2005, he founded Vertebration, Inc. and designed the MIS XYcor, the first clinically proven horizontally expandable spinal implant in the world. Dr. Fabian holds numerous patents and has been involved in numerous FDA clinical trials, as well as lecturing and teaching internationally.

He has lectured throughout Europe, Canada, Latin America and the United States. His current research interests include minimally invasive lumbar fusion, osteobiologics and the application of robotics to spinal surgery.

One of the biggest joys is seeing a concept drawn on a piece of scrap paper come to fruition in a satisfied patient. It’s worth more than gold to see patients pain-free and off narcotics and enjoying life again.

— Dr. Henry F. Fabian, Jr.