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Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

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Spine Center
Navigation Service Elevates Patient Care

Back and neck pain ranks near the top of the list as a reason for visits to primary care physicians. To expedite surgical and non-surgical care for patients with back and neck pain, Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital has opened a new Spine Center. The center features a unique spine care navigation service, designed to help patients receive the complete spine care they need from diagnosis and treatment through rehabilitation services — all in one convenient location.

It’s not uncommon for people suffering with back and neck pain to try many kinds of treatment without real relief, and it can be frustrating to wait many weeks for an appointment with a specialist. At the core of Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital’s Spine Center is a nurse practitioner or “navigator” who will help patients get going in the right direction.

“We believe patients with back and neck pain should have the benefit of comprehensive care that includes easy access and a simple process from start to finish,” says Rajesh Bindal, M.D., board-certified neurosurgeon and medical director of the Spine Center. “Our innovative approach to care helps all patients — walk-ins and those with physician referrals — see the right specialist they need very quickly.

“Care is coordinated by a nurse navigator assigned to each patient who then assists the patient through the treatment process,” says Dr. Bindal. “The nurse schedules all appointments and continues to meet with the patient to discuss the treatment plan, answer questions and help educate the patient about his or her treatment and condition.”

“The overall management of spine care includes imaging, diagnoses, pain management, physical and occupational therapy, and surgical procedures when necessary,” says Irfan Lalani, M.D., board-certified neurologist and pain specialist on staff at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital. “At the Spine Center, we will coordinate this care and be able to make the correct referral the first time due, in large part, to evidence-based medicine.”

Jeffrey Jackson, M.D., board-certified neurologist and chief of the Medical Staff at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, agrees. “This multidisciplinary approach means patients will receive the most appropriate treatment from the right specialty physician based on scientific research and proven treatment methods. Patients can be assured treatment will be of the highest possible quality and that it is provided as soon and as safely as possible,” Dr. Jackson says.

“Patients will be led through a process of assessment and treatment ranging from physical therapy to aggressive non-surgical management, and if necessary, delicate spine surgery tailored to the patient’s unique condition,” says Jeffrey Wood, M.D., board-certified orthopedic spine surgeon with Methodist Orthopaedic Specialists of Texas. Through minimally invasive spine surgery, such spine conditions as degenerative disk disease, spinal stenosis, nerve compression, recurrent herniated disks and other trauma can be alleviated.

“Our spine care patients also benefit from Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital’s sophisticated diagnostic equipment and technology,” shares Dr. Wood. “For example, the industry’s most powerful whole body 3 Tesla MRI provides state-of-the-art image resolution while reducing exam times.”

The Spine Center is located on the Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital campus with easy access off of Town Center Boulevard. Patients with primary care physician referrals, as well as those without referrals, are welcome. For more information or to schedule an appointment at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital’s Spine Center, please call 281-313-BACK (2225).