Dr. Howard Cotler, MD

Orthopedic Spine Surgery  |  
Male  |  
Age 64
Insurances AcceptedSave
Dr. Howard Cotler, MD
Gulf Coast Spine Care is your spine specialist. Our team of experts is committed to the full spectrum of spine care. But more importantly our team is committed to YOU. We pride ourselves on our concierge service. We strive to maintain the high level of care and compassion that our patients have come to expect from us. With over 30 years of experience in Houston, our team of Spine Specialists is Board Certified and Fellowship trained in comprehensive spine care. We bring a knowledge and expertise which is unrivaled in the following areas: Spinal stenosis Pinched nerve Herniated disc Back and Spine surgery Sciatica Shoulder blade pain Neck pain Spondylolisthesis treatment Degenerative disc disease Our primary goal with each patient is to educate, inform and minimize pain. When one deals with an unknown condition and is faced with ambiguity to which, hope and endurance is often not a solution, Gulf Coast Spine Care wants to have our patients pause and take a deep breath, and become educated about their situation. We have found that education brings clarity to complex situations. Hopefully with understanding, one can make decisions which resolve the problem and result in a positive outcome. Unfortunately, prolonged pain can disable the spirit as well as the body, and Gulf Coast Spine Care Limited, PA, is dedicated to rehabilitating both. We combine the most advanced medical care available with a multidisciplinary approach that enables patients to tap into their own critical powers of healing.

Plaza Medical Center

1200 Binz St Ste 970

Houston, TX 77004

Contact Information
Dr. Howard Cotler, MD

Dr. Howard Cotler, MD

Accepted insurance

  • Aetna
  • AvMed
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
  • Cigna
  • First Health (Coventry Health Care)
  • Humana
  • Medicaid
  • MultiPlan
  • UnitedHealthCare

*Please verify this information when scheduling an appointment.

Learn about Dr. Cotler

Care Philosophy

Our Patient Care Goals

Cases treated at Gulf Coast Spine Care range from simple back strain, to "failed back syndrome," in which serious problems persist in spite of surgery. Our primary goal is returning patients to their normal life and activities as soon as possible, Gulf Coast Spine Care offers the most advanced integrated spine care available for back and neck problems. A full time Physician Assistant facilitates prompt patient evaluations, enhance effective communication with both patients and referring physicians, and promote continuity of care from the initial evaluation to the completion of treatment. Our office staff is respectful, professional and knowledgeable. With an emphasis on personalized and "patient centered" care, whatever a patients problem may be; we pride ourselves in giving patients the time and attention they need to understand their condition and their treatment options. Our secondary goals are to::

  • Establish Realistic Expectations
  • Decrease Pain
  • Minimize the Use of Medications
  • Maximize Individual Productivity
...Read More

Dr. Cotler's Experience

Dr. Cotler's experience matches your search based on the following criteria:
  • Based on total number of patients treated over the last 12 months
  • Specializes in Orthopedic Spine Surgery
  • Board certified in Orthopedic Surgery
  • No malpractice claims found
  • No sanctions found
  • No board actions found


  • Orthopedic Spine Surgery
  • Minimally Invasive Orthopedic Spine Surgery
  • Orthopedic Surgery
  • Pain Medicine
  • Spinal Sensory Disorders

Board Certifications

  • Orthopedic Surgery
    Accredited by: American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery*

Conditions Treated

  • Adhesive Capsulitis
  • Autoimmune Diseases
  • Back Pain
  • Bone Disorders
  • Cancer
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Cervical Spine Myelopathy
  • Chronic Neck Pain
  • Coccygeal Pain
  • Degenerative Disc Disease
  • Difficulty With Walking
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Fracture
  • Gait Abnormality
  • Gout
  • Hand Conditions
  • Headache
  • Herniated Disc
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease
  • Joint Pain
  • Limb Pain
  • Low Back Pain
  • Lumbar Spine Fracture
  • Myelopathy
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Osteoarthritis of Spine
  • Pathological Spine Fracture
  • Post-Laminectomy Syndrome
  • Radiculopathy (Not Due to Disc Displacement)
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Sciatica (Not Due to Disc Displacement)
  • Scoliosis
  • Spinal Stenosis
  • Spine Deformities
  • Spine Disorders
  • Spine Fractures, Traumatic
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Sprains and Strains (incl. Muscle Tear)


Read More


  • Dural Repair or Other Spinal Cord Repair
  • Herniated Disc Surgery
  • Lamina Procedures (incl. Laminectomy, Laminoplasty, Laminotomy)
  • Spinal Fusion
  • Spinal Reconstructive Surgery for Deformities

Background Check

0 Malpractice Claims

No malpractice history found for Texas.

0 Sanctions

No sanctions history found for the years that Healthgrades collects data.

0 Board Actions

No board actions found for the years that Healthgrades collects data.


  • George Washington University
    Undergraduate School | Graduated 1975
  • Jefferson Medical College Of Thomas Jefferson University
    Medical School | Graduated 1979
  • Grady Memorial Hospital/Emory University
    Internship Hospital | Completed 1980
  • Thomas Jefferson University Hospital
    Residency Hospital | Completed 1984
  • Harborview Medical Center/University Of Washington
    Fellowship Hospital | Completed 1985
  • Northwestern Center Feinberg School of Medicine
    Fellowship Hospital | Completed 1984

Awards & Recognition

Awards & Honors
  • Healthgrades Honor Roll
Media & Publications

Dr. Cotler has no media or publications listed.

Languages Spoken

  • English
  • Spanish

Memberships & Professional Affiliations

Dr. Cotler does not have any memberships or affiliations listed. If you are Dr. Cotler and would like to add memberships or affiliations, please update your profile.

Dr. Cotler's Reviews

Likelihood of recommending Dr. Cotler to family and friends
based on 18 total reviews (6 with comments)
Dr. Cotler Says:

Our Clinic has successfully treated a range of back pain sufferers including:

  • Astronauts
  • Olympic athletes
  • Bull riders
  • State Troopers
  • Firefighters

For over 20 years, Gulf Coast Spine Care has offered the full range of non-operative (conservative) and modern surgical management for most conditions of the adult spine

Laser health spa

Dr. Cotler's Performance
  • Trustworthiness
  • Explains condition(s) well
  • Answers Questions
  • Time well spent
Office & Staff Performance
  • Scheduling
  • Office environment
  • Staff friendliness
  • Average wait time
    10 to 15 minutes
Patient Comments (6)
Houston, TX |
Disreputable Dr.! I went to him for a workers comp visit. He took X-rays, did a quick exam and his only recomemndation was to get a Fitbit and watch my diet. He did not refer me to get physical therapy or an MRI or a steroid injection. He said I had degenerative disc disease and that's all. A few months later, I went to a more competent Dr. who had me get an MRI. Turns out I have 5 herniated discs and nerve damage!! Why didnt Dr Cotler catch that? That is a pretty major misdiagnosis. AVOID!
in Missouri City, TX |
I would recommend Dr, Cotler to family and friends. Dr. Cotler is an excellent Dr.and straight to the point. Ihave been under his care for over a year.He did surgery on my back on May 18 of last year.
in Houston, TX |
In my search Dr. Cotler kept appearing & his staff is a great representation of him.Upon my visits he took time to explain my options. At 59, this was a surgery I had to put thought into. I'm thankful I chose Cotler, he's straight to the point, he explains what is needed for your recovery & expects you to follow his directions for your surgery to be a success, I find it to be 50/50 relationship, you must be devoted to your recovery I would strongly recommend Dr. Cotler. I would use him again
Spring, TX |
I would highly recommend Dr. Cotler. He never pressured me to have surgery, just told me my diagnosis and the decision was totally mine. I did have surgery and everything went smoothly. He explains everything to you, has time for your questions and makes you feel comfortable with your decision. Great office staff!
in Baytown, TX |
Dr Cotler Has operated on me twice and my son once and did a great job every time. We both walked away pain free and very satisfied with the job he did on us. Him and his staff are also very friendly.
in Houston, TX |
Dr. Cotler's application of laser technology has dramatically improved my knee rehab after knee replacement surgery. Nothing else was allowing rehab to progress satisfactorily, but application of the lasers by his staff has radically improved mobility and reduced swelling. Highly recommended!
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Now Accepting New Patients
This provider offers the following appointment availability:
Next Day
Dr. Cotler accepts 9 insurance carriers
  • Aetna
  • AvMed
    Open Access
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield
    Blue Card PPO
  • Cigna
    Cigna HMO
    Cigna PPO
    Great West Healthcare-Cigna PPO
  • First Health (Coventry Health Care)
    First Health (Coventry Health Care) PPO
  • Humana
    Choice Care PPO
  • Medicaid
  • MultiPlan
    MultiPlan PPO
    PHCS Network PPO
  • UnitedHealthCare
    Choice Plus POS
    Options PPO

*Please verify this information when scheduling an appointment.

Hospitals where Dr. Cotler has admitting privileges

Park Plaza Hospital
1313 Hermann Dr
Houston, TX 77004
View Hospital Profile
Houston Hospital for Specialized Surgery
5445 La Branch St
Houston, TX 77004
View Hospital Profile
Memorial Hermann Orthopedic & Spine Hospital
5410 West Loop S
Bellaire, TX 77401
View Hospital Profile