From Wheel Chair Bound to Miss Rodeo Texas 1st Runner Up Thanks to Houston Spine Surgeon Dr. Richard Francis

In spite of a fractured vertebra and a compressed spinal cord, in 2012 Rachel Odem ran for Miss Rodeo Texas and won 1st runner up, standing tall and beautiful.
Following a terrible accident and falling 25 feet off a cliff while trying to rope swing into a river, young Rachel Odem is first told to change her lifestyle and get used to the idea of being in a wheel chair… that was before she met Houston Spine Surgeon Dr. Richard Francis!

Just over five years ago a young lady named Rachel Odem fell off a rope swing while trying to swing out into a river. Unfortunately, Rachel fractured her L1 lumbar vertebra and her spinal cord was compressed over 60%. Originally, the initial doctors who treated her said they would not even consider surgery as an option and that she would need to change her lifestyle because she would probably be wheel chair bound from now on.

For obvious reasons, her mother was simply not satisfied with that outcome and after talking with her sister she found out about a doctor in Houston who may be able to help.

The doctor she contacted was Houston Spine Surgeon Dr. Richard Francis of Spine Associates and although it had been eight days since the accident by the time she was able to get her daughter in to Houston to see him, he did perform surgery and after just 10 months Rachel experienced a complete recovery.

Following is the exact text of the testimonial Rachel’s mother posted online on May 26, 2014…

“5 Years ago today, My Daughter, Rachel Odem, suffered a tragic accident when she fell off a cliff 25 foot while swinging into the river on a rope swing. Rachel’s L1 was fractured and compressing her spinal cord over 60%. She was unable to move from the waist down. The doctors in Waco, Texas said: “Change your lifestyle, you will probably be confined to a wheelchair. They would not consider surgery. But, through my sister, WrettaJo Jodi Vanek Schaefer, we found our hero, Dr Spine Associates Richard Francis, MD. I transported Rachel to Houston ASAP. It had been 8 days since the accident. Dr Francis performed surgery and repaired Rachel’s injury with great expertise and skill. And then, he told her she would walk again. Her family pulled together for a full rehab and after a few complications, Rachel made a full recovery in 10 months with Dr Francis by her side. In 2012, She ran for Miss Rodeo Texas and won 1st runner up, standing tall and beautiful. Today, she has a wonderful career and lives a very happy life. In fact, she is in Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic this week on vacation having fun in the sun! Dr Richard Francis is not only an amazing Christian man, he is also an outstanding Doctor with skills and expertise I have never known. We are very blessed to know him!! We will always love him!! Love, Donna & Rachel Odem and family!” — Donna M. Odem Nichols

Richard R.M. Francis, MD is a recognized leader in orthopedic spine surgery in Houston Texas. Dr. Francis has built a considerable reputation by taking a conservative approach while employing cutting-edge technologies and has dedicated his practice to treating patients with spine disorders for almost a decade.

Dr. Francis of Spine Associates has offices in both Beaumont and Houston Texas:

5420 West Loop South,
Suite 2500
Bellaire, Texas 77401
Phone: 713-383-7100
Fax: 713-383-7500

One Folsom Building
3820 Pointe Parkway
at Folsom Drive
Beaumont, Texas 77706
Phone: 409-767-8221
Fax: 409-785-4200

For additional information or to contact Dr. Francis’ office please see the website at:

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Contact Person: Keith Robinson
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Phone: 713-416-3529
City: Houston
State: Texas
Country: United States