Back pain is an inevitable part of life, but it does not have to control your life. The goal is to get ahead of the pain, rather than to chase it.
— Dr. Esther Yaniv

Undergraduate degree: University of Michigan (1996)

Medical degree: Sackler School of Medicine/Tel Aviv University (2000)

Fellowship in Intervention Spine: Caroline Spine, Pain & Rehab (2005)

Residency in PMR: Emory University (2004)

Dr. yaniv

Esther Yaniv, M.D., is a board-certified Physiatrist. She specializes in

  • diagnosing the many factors that could be causing pain and a loss of function, and

  • working with the patient to find ways to get the best outcome.

As a non-surgical spine specialist, Dr. Yaniv’s focus is on the spine, neck, and lower back. Dr. Yaniv believes in a comprehensive approach to treatment, which may include physical therapy and pain management, as well as lifestyle modification and weight management. As a certified Yoga instructor, Dr. Yaniv understands that overcoming physical problems is not just about the body, but also about the mind. Many things can contribute to how each of us experiences pain.

Dr. Yaniv has practiced medicine in Austin for more than 12 years. She recently left a hospital (ie corporate) based practice where she was limited by a “traditional” and “close-minded” environment.  Instead, she chose to pursue her passion to help people in a more integrative and comprehensive way. She believes that the best outcomes happen when patients take an active role in their recovery as part of a collaborative doctor-patient relationship. When she is not working with patients or teaching Yoga, Dr. Yaniv enjoys spending time with her husband and her family. Her passions include fitness and travel. 

A few years into my practice, I started to feel frustrated as I was finding so many limitations in how I was treating pain.  I also began to suffer from chronic low back pain. As I started to go through my own journey on addressing my pain, I felt more and more that I wasn't offering all I could to my patients.  Long story short, for several reasons on both ends, my employment with Seton ended and in 2018, I opened up my own practice. While I continue to offer some of the "bread and butter" treatments (Injections and such), this is not the norm, but the exception.  I am slowly moving my practice to a more integrative one, where "east" meets "west. I am a certified yoga instructor and offer one-on-one yoga sessions with my patients. I educate them on breath control, posture, mindfulness etc. And I love it! For willing patients, the response is amazing.  I agree 100% about the healing power of empathetic listening. And now that New Patient visits are one hour, I actually have the time.

I'm only one year in and have a long way to go and to learn.  I do believe, as do you, that we as PMR physicians are the ideal specialty to forge this healthcare belief forward.  And as one of the only Spine Physiatrists that is yoga certified and McKenzie Part A trained, I am so excited to see this vision of wellness through.  If you plan on attending the AAPMR conference this fall in San Antonio, I'd love to set aside time to meet up.