Treatments & Procedures

In all that we do at Houston Methodist Spine Centers, we believe proper diagnosis and effective treatment require a well-coordinated approach by a multidisciplinary team of experts. With this core philosophy in mind, Houston Methodist diagnoses and treats a variety of spine-related conditions with advanced services ranging from conservative to interventional care.   

At the Houston Methodist Spine Center, patients benefit from the most advanced treatments available, ranging from conservative to interventional treatments. Non-operative (conservative) care includes physical and aquatic therapy, as well as pain management and injection-based therapy to treat nerve roots with steroids or deaden irritated nerves with heat. 


Non-operative, conservative care includes several options:
  • Physical therapy treats spine conditions through physical methods, such as massage and exercise.
  • Aquatic therapy includes a variety of physical therapy that is performed in water, using the water's natural resistance to improve strength and flexibility gradually.
  • Pain management eases suffering and improves the quality of life of patients living with pain.

 

Less-invasive therapies done via injection-based diagnosis are offered at Houston Methodist:

  • Discography is an X-ray guided diagnostic procedure that involves injecting disks with a sterile dye.
  • Epidural steroid injections (ESI) treat irritated nerve roots directly with steroids.
  • Facet and medial branch blocks are injections of local anesthesia directly into a joint in the spine (facet block) or near a nerve outside the joint (medial branch block).
  • Facet rhizotomy is a procedure in which an electrothermal needle is inserted into a joint to deaden irritated nerves with heat.

 

Our specialists are also well versed performing decompressive spinal surgery.

  • Laminectomy removes the lamina (posterior arch of the vertebral bone) from a vertebra to relieve pressure on the lumbar (lower), thoracic (middle) or cervical (upper) spinal cord.
  • Lumbar microscopic discectomy removes herniated disc material in the lumbar (lower) spine that is pressing on a spinal nerve.
  • Thoracic laminectomy surgery removes the lamina (posterior arch of the vertebral bone) from a vertebra in the thoracic (middle) spine to relieve pressure on the spinal cord
  • Cervical laminectomy surgery removes the lamina (posterior arch of the vertebral bone) from a vertebra in the cervical (upper) spine to relieve pressure on the spinal cord
  • Cervical laminoplasty relieves pressure on the nerves in the cervical (upper) spine by cutting the lamina on both sides of the affected vertebrae.
  • Cervical microscopic foraminotomy enlarges the space through which a nerve root exits the spinal cord, known as the neural foramen, in the cervical (upper) spine.
  • Most patients with back pain do not require surgery. When surgery is necessary, however, new techniques yield remarkable success reducing pain and preventing permanent injury.
  • Minimally invasive spine surgery (MISS) allows surgeons to correct spinal problems through small incisions using special equipment, avoiding many of the potential complications of open surgery.
  • Total disc replacement (arthroplasty) is a surgical procedure to replace a degenerated intervertebral disc in the cervical (upper) or lumbar (lower) spine.
  • Cervical spinal fusion surgery joins (fuses) selected bones in the neck to provide stability and to stimulate the growth of new bone.
  • Anterior cervical discectomy and fusion (ACDF) is a surgical procedure to remove herniated disc material and decompress the nerves in the cervical (upper) spine, performed through the front of the neck
  • Posterior cervical fusion (PCF) joins (fuses) the bones in the back of the cervical (upper) spine to relieve pressure and provide stability
  • Resection (removal) of spinal tumors may be needed to relieve compression on the spinal cord.
  • Spinal radiosurgery (SRS) involves the precise delivery of high doses of radiation to spinal tumors that limits exposure to healthy surrounding structures.
  • Spinal cord stimulation (SCS) is a procedure that implants a small pulse generator in the back, which emits electrical pulses that interfere with the nerve impulses that cause pain.
  • Intrathecal pain pumps are devices implanted in the abdomen that deliver medication directly to the spinal cord.

State-of-the-Art Technology and Treatment Options 
Our operating rooms feature the latest lighting and ancillary equipment. Houston Methodist patients also benefit from active electrode monitoring (AEM) instrumentation for all laparoscopic surgeries — a state-of-the-art monitoring system. 

Our highly skilled surgeons perform minimally invasive spine surgery to correct spinal problems through small incisions using special equipment, avoiding many of the potential complications of open surgery. Spinal fusion surgery joins (fuses) selected bones in the neck to provide stability and stimulate the growth of new bone while relieving pressure. 

Advanced technology is just part of the picture. Houston Methodist has dedicated neurosurgeons who are trained to diagnose and treat spine and neck problems. Spinal tumors may be treated with steroids, radiation or chemotherapy, and often surgery may be needed to relieve compression on the spinal cord. Spinal radiosurgery (SRS) involves the precise delivery of high doses of radiation to spinal tumors that limits exposure to healthy surrounding structures. Spinal Cord Stimulation (SCS) implants a small pulse generator in the back, where it emits electrical pulses that interfere with the nerve impulses that cause pain; and intrathecal pain pumps are devices implanted in the abdomen that deliver medication directly to the spinal cord. 

Interventional therapy decompressive spinal surgery includes various procedures, such as lumbar and thoracic laminectomy surgeries that relieve pressure on the spinal cord. Total disc replacement (arthroplasty) replaces a degenerated intervertebral disc in the cervical (upper) spine with artificial material or in the lumbar (lower) spine with artificial material. 

In addition, our doctors hold the most recent certifications and licenses and are involved in continuing education. From the moment you enter through our doors, our team is available to offer guidance through your treatment journey.


To schedule an appointment or for more information, call 713.790.3333