Find The Help You Need For Your Pain
Whether your pain is related to arthritis, injury, or simply just do not know why you are hurting, call us today and let us evaluate your symptoms and get you back to living in motion.
Schedule your visit at one of our locations: Austin, Houston-Bellaire, Houston- Clear Lake, Houston- Katy, New Braunfels, San Antonio- Northside
We Treat Pain Caused by Ailments Such As:
- Osteoarthritis (Joint Pain)
- Degenerative Disc Disease
- Bulging Discs
- Disc Herniation
- Cervical Radiculopathy
- Spinal Stenosis
- Facet Syndrome
- Plantar Fasciitis
- Varicose Veins
- Uterine Fibroids
- Peripheral Artery Disease
- Prostate Hypertrophy
What are Some Symptoms of Osteoarthritis?
The most common type of arthritis leading to joint pain, osteoarthritis is the wear-and-tear type of arthritis that affects most of us as we age.
Osteoarthritis develops when the cartilage inside a joint begins to thin, much like brake pads on a car or like rubber on a tire. As the cartilage wears down, the natural ability of the cartilage to withstand weight bearing and activity also wears down, which causes pain and limitation with certain activities.
As a degenerative condition that becomes worse with time, osteoarthritis presently has no cure. As the ailment progresses, the cartilage in your joints becomes more and more damaged due to the wear and tear caused by our daily life, walking, exercising, and working. As that cartilage continues to wear away, the treatment and management of the symptoms become more challenging and the symptoms become worse.
- Joint stiffness
- Joint pain
- Joint weakness
- Reduced mobility
- Popping or crackling of the joint
What are Some Symptoms of Degenerative Disc Disease?
Degenerative disc disease is a progressive condition that will affect nearly all humans at some point in their life. This condition refers to the spinal discs that sit between our spinal bones, as they slowly age as we age.
A healthy spinal disc is more than 80% fluid, but after the age of 23, the spinal disc slowly dehydrates causing the disc to flatten over time. The outside of the disc is a thick multilayer of cartilage called the annulus that maintains the shape and strength of the disc. The inner material called the nucleus-pulposis is a thick gel-like material made of water.
Over time, the nucleus loses water concentration, and the outer annulus can also begin to break down, while the rings of cartilage responsible for maintaining the shape of the disc can tear and loosen. This process can cause neck and back pain.
- Neck/back stiffness
- Neck/back pain
- Reduced mobility of the neck or back
What are Some Symptoms of Bulging Discs?
A herniated disc and bulging disc are similar and often used interchangeably by many physicians. In a normal disc, the outer annulus of the disc is responsible for holding the disc together so that it maintains its strength and shape. A herniated disc occurs when this outer annulus tears, letting the gel-like nucleus ooze out. The protruding gel can pinch the nerves and even spinal cord, depending on the severity of the tear. Pain may or may not radiate to the arms or legs, depending on if the disc herniates straight back or off to the side.
- Muscle weakness
What are Some Causes of Disc Herniation?
Disc herniations can be caused from lifting injuries, sport injuries like CrossFit or football, car accidents, repetitive injuries, and even just aging. Statistics show that, if you viewed a MRI of 100 relatively pain-free patients, 50 would have herniated and bulging discs with no pain or symptoms at all.
Disc herniations are not always painful and symptomatic, but when they are, the following conditions are typical:
- Neck/Back Pain
- Radiating pain in the arm or leg
- Numbness or tingling in the arm or leg
What are Some Symptoms of Sciatica?
Sciatica is a common condition affecting the largest and longest nerve in the human body – the sciatic nerve. This nerve is derived from nerve roots in the lower spine that look like tree branches funneling into a long trunk that runs the entire length of the leg from the buttocks to the foot.
Sciatica symptoms usually begin when a nerve root in the spine becomes irritated due to pressure from a bulging or herniated disc. Nerve roots are very sensitive, and direct pressure can cause irritation and eventual inflammation. This is what often results in radiating or shooting pain down the leg, even down to the foot.
Determining which nerve root level is affected depends on what part of the leg you may feel pain. The L5 distribution may cause symptoms along the side of the calf and even into the big toe, whereas the S1 distribution could cause pain in the rear of the hamstring and back of the calf. Numbness and tingling and even weakness could be related, with or without sciatic pain.
- Radiating or shooting pain in the leg or buttocks
- Numbness/tingling in the leg or foot
- Weakness of the leg or foot
- Sciatic pain is not always associate with lower back pain
What are Some Symptoms of Cervical Radiculopathy?
Cervical radiculopathy occurs when a nerve root in the neck is irritated or pinched, often by bulging or herniated discs. This condition usually feels like a sharp or aching pain down the arm, sometimes to the hand and fingertips. A person may also experience tingling or numbness in the arm, hand or both.
Weakness can be associated with more severe compression of the nerve root in the neck. In more extreme cases, you can have radiating pain both arms, which could be related to spinal cord compression from a larger herniated disc or spinal stenosis.
- Shooting pain in the arm/hand
- Numbness/Tingling in the arm/hand
- Possible weakness of the arm/hand/fingers
What are Some Symptoms of Spinal Stenosis
Spinal stenosis refers to the narrowing of the spinal canal where the spinal cord lives. Our vertebrae are made with an opening that runs the length of our spines from the base of the brain all the way through our tailbone. The diameter of the canal can sometimes shrink due to degeneration of the spinal joints called facets, herniated or bulging discs, thickening of ligaments, or a combination of these factors.
On occasion, people can be genetically born with a small diameter spinal canal, and the symptoms usually appear around 30 years of age when the spine begins to naturally show some signs of age.
- Radiating pain in the arms or legs
- Numbness/tingling in the arms or legs
- Weakness in the arms or legs
- Forward posture bending at the waist when walking to relieve pain
- Leaning on a grocery cart to relieve back/leg pain
- Inability to walk for long distances due to increasing lower back pain/leg pain
What is Facet Joint Syndrome?
Facet Joint Syndrome refers to back pain caused exclusively by the small facet joints of the spine. Each vertebrae of the spine has 2 facet joints that articulate or move with the vertebrae above and below. These joints aid mobility of the spine.
Like any other synovial joint in the body, these joints can become arthritic and cause pain. The pain usually feels like a deep back pain that worsens from movement like bending side-to-side or extending the spine rearward.
- Back pain not associated with disc problems
- Back pain with movements like side bending or extension of the spine
- Deep back pain that is non-tender to palpation of the muscle
What are Some Symptoms of Sacroiliitis?
Sacroilitis refers to inflammation of the sacroiliac joint. Located between the tailbone and the pelvis, this joint is often overlooked by many physicians as the source of a patient’s lower back pain. When the joint becomes inflamed due to arthritis, injury, or repetitive micro-trauma, the joint can become tight or fixated, causing a tremendous amount of pain and disability.
- Stiffness in the lower spine
- Lower back pain
- Pain when sitting for long periods of time
What are Some Symptoms for Tendonitis?
Tendonitis means inflammation of a tendon – the tissue that connects a muscle to a bone. Tendons can become inflamed with injury and repetitive movements that cause irritation, which then slowly leads to inflammation.
Tendonitis can be challenging to treat in many instances because tendons have a very poor blood supply. Blood is needed to carry vital healing cells to the area to rid the tendon of the inflammation and repair the damaged tissue. PRP and Amniotic Regenerative Tissue injections are some of the most effective treatments when rest and simple medications do not alleviate the pain.
- Pain with movement of a muscle
- Weakness or pain with lifting
- Increased pain with activity/sports
What are Some Symptoms for Plantar Fasciitis?
Plantar Fasciitis is an inflammatory condition of the protective tissue surrounding the muscles of the bottom of the foot. This condition can result from wearing shoes with an improper fit or not enough arch support. It can also start after long periods of walking or from long-distance running.
- Pain along the arch or heel of the foot
- Foot pain in the morning when getting out of bed
- Increased pain in the foot when walking long distances
Neuropathy can be a painful and devastating nerve disorder often affecting the lower legs, feet and hands which can cause pain, numbness/tingling and weakness. Most causes of peripheral neuropathy are unknown or idiopathic, but can also be caused by uncontrolled diabetes, infections, medications, chemotherapy, inherited genetic problems, trauma and exposure to toxins.
The pain from peripheral neuropathy can be described as burning, sharp, stabbing and tingling. Medications can help with these symptoms, but if the cause of the condition is unknown or left untreated, the symptoms can become worse with time.
Symptoms of peripheral neuropathy may include:
- Gradual onset of numbness, tingling or both in the hands or feet and slowly spread to the lower legs or forearms
- Sharp, stabbing or burning pain that begin mildly and can become progressively worse
- Sensitivity to light touch or pressure
- Muscle weakness
- Balance problems/poor coordination
- Feeling as if you are wearing gloves or socks when you are not
Varicose veins are a common and sometimes unsightly condition that affects millions across the country. Often considered just a cosmetic concern, research demonstrates a strong correlation between varicose veins and deep vein thrombosis (DVT). DVT can pose serious health risks if the blood clot becomes dislodged and embolizes to the lungs causing what is known as a pulmonary embolism, which can be fatal.
Varicose veins occur as a result of numerous factors including long hours of standing, genetic factors, post pregnancy, obesity, aging and trauma. Women are three times more likely to have varicose veins than men and if one of your parents have varicose veins you are 80% likely to develop varicose veins yourself.
• Aching or heaviness in the legs
• Restless legs
• Ankle swelling
• Reddish/Brownish skin discoloration in the lower legs (leathery appearance)
• Appearance of spider veins
• Tingling or numbness in the legs
• Open sores
• Varicose Veins
• Itching or peeling skin over the lower legs/feet
There are some conservative treatment options that may be beneficial in the early stages of the condition including:
• Elevating the legs
• Weight Loss
• Compression Stockings
• Intermittent Pneumatic Compression
Once conservative treatments fail, we can then consider a highly effective and non-surgical solution called Endovascular Thermal Ablation. This procedure is the preferred treatment method for varicose veins, is minimally invasive with little downtime following treatment and has minimal risks.
The entire endovascular thermal ablation procedure only takes about 15-30 minutes to perform from start to finish. The actual ablation of the vein itself only takes about 2-3 minutes. Prior to the start of the treatment, the vein is scanned with an ultrasound to map exactly where the vein is and a local anesthetic is used to minimize pain.
Women of childbearing years often develop benign muscular tumors of the uterus known as fibroids that can cause severe and debilitating symptoms. These growths rarely turn into a cancerous lesion and most women never even know they have them. Statistically 80% of women will have fibroids, but a smaller percentage develop symptoms.
- Symptoms of uterine fibroids include:
- Heavy Bleeding during the menstrual cycle
- Painful menstrual cycles
- Frequent urination
- Pelvic pain or lower back pain
- Painful sexual intercourse
Risk factors of uterine fibroids include a family history of fibroids, obesity, early onset menstration before the age of 10, diets high in red meat, alcohol use and race. Black women tend to have a much higher incidence, larger and a higher count of fibroids than other races.
Traditionally, when uterine fibroid symptoms become severe enough to consider treatment, surgically removing the uterus was sometimes the only option given to patients. This not only removes any chance of planning for a family, but also poses more risk to the patient undergoing major surgery.
At ARVC, we provide a much more conservative, less invasive and highly effective treatment option called uterine fibroid embolization. This procedure is performed in the office with no more than a 1-2mm incision in order to access the arterial system through which the procedure is performed. Like having an angiogram for your heart, a small catheter is inserted through the femoral artery through a network of blood vessels to eventually access the blood supply to the unwanted fibroids. This is performed under x-ray guidance using a contrast dye to outline the blood flow. After injecting what are known as embolization beads to slow the blood flow to the fibroids, the fibroids eventually shrink due to the reduced the blood supply and the symptoms resolve.
Uterine fibroid embolization gives our patients an effective, safe alternative to surgical hysterectomy and allows them to continue their dream of having children.
At ARVC, we specialize in minimally invasive treatments that can be an alternative to surgery with the same or even better results. Hemorrhoid Artery Embolization is a minimally invasive procedure performed in the office without having to go through the anus. The procedure is performed lying face up and the physician accesses the femoral artery with a small catheter. The Superior Rectal Artery is found under X-ray through a network of blood vessels connecting to the femoral artery. Once the branches of the Super Rectal Artery are found via angiography (contrast dye injected into the vessels), small beads are then injected to reduce blood flow through the CCR or Corpus Cavernosum Recti, which ultimately leads to an improvement or resolution of symptoms. The great news is the procedure is very safe with little risk of documented side effects and the patient can return to work the next day.
Blood flow is critical to the health of our extremities like the legs and feet. Blockages of the lower extremity arteries due to plaques and calcium deposits can restrict blood flow to our legs and feet. In severe cases, these occlusions can lead to amputation. Our goal at ARVC is early detection of these blockages and provide interventions to maintain proper blood flow to the vital tissues of the lower extremities.
Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) also known as atherosclerosis can cause a number of symptoms including:
- Coldness in the leg or foot
- Leg numbness or tingling
- Absent/diminished pulse In the leg or foot
- Shiny skin on the legs
- Open sores on the feet or legs (Non-healing)
- Hair loss on the legs
- Painful cramping in the legs when walking
- Pain in the legs when resting or after activity
Treatment for PAD includes a procedure known as an atherectomy to “vacuum” the plaque from the damaged blood vessel and sometimes a stent to keep the artery open if there is concern for the strength of the arterial wall. At ARVC, we are able to provide these treatments in the comfort of our office in our procedure suite using minimally invasive treatment techniques all guided under state of the art digital imaging.
• Frequent urination
• Inability to fully empty the bladder
• Dribbling at the end of urinating
• Slowed or delayed start urinating
• Inability to urinate
• Painful urination
• Straining to urinate
There is no known cause of an enlarged prostate also known as Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH), but there are a few factors that are linked to the condition including age, hormone levels, urinary tract infections, scarring in the bladder due to surgery, nerve damage in the bladder nerves and cancer of the prostate or bladder.
When these symptoms become a hindrance to your quality of life, treatment can be considered to shrink the size of the prostate to alleviate the symptoms. At ARVC, we perform a highly effective and minimally invasive treatment known as Prostate Artery Embolization. This treatment is performed like an angiogram for your heart vessels, but instead of looking for heart vessel blockages, we target the blood vessels to the prostate. The goal of this procedure is to selective target certain prostate artery branches and slow a portion of the blood supply to allow the prostate itself to shrink. Afterwards, as the prostate shrinks, symptoms improve or resolve entirely.