Traction – Spinal decompression
Spinal Traction describes the longitudinal separation of vertebrae and decompression of discs. At Spine + body, manual therapy combined with traction can provide relief to severe back and neck pain sufferers by gently reducing the pressure within spinal discs.
Technically traction of any joint whether peripheral (such as the ankle or hip joint) or spinal, is a variant on many different types of mobilisation techniques designed to increase joint range of movement, reduce pain by decompressing painful or inflamed structures such as nerve roots, or both.
Force is applied longitudinally gently separating painful and restricted joints and associated soft tissue structures.
Traction is particularly useful in cases where damage to a spinal disc, or spinal arthritic changes have resulted in compression of nerve roots leading to sciatic or radiating pain. By alleviating compressive pressure on a disc, the nerve ceases to transmit pain impulses along it’s distribution and, depending on how long the nerve has been compressed, will enable the return of normal muscular strength of function.
Traction is effective for:
– Bulging, prolapsed, or herniated discs
– Spinal stenosis
– Facet syndrome
– Degenerative disc disease
– Neck pain
– Pain radiating down the arm
– “Pinched nerves”
Traction can be applied to either the lumbar (lower back) or cervical (neck) regions and can be modified in direction, angulation and force to achieve the desired degree of decompression.
Back Pain/Sciatica lumbar traction
A pelvic harness is worn by the patient. The specially equipped table on which the patient lies is slowly extended, and a distraction force is applied via the pelvic harness until the desired tension is reached. This is followed by a gradual decrease of the tension, and the cycle is repeated. The cyclic nature of the treatment allows the patient to withstand stronger distraction forces compared to static lumbar traction techniques. The level of tension is individually calibrated and recorded.
Neck Pain/ Radicular arm pain
The patient’s head is comfortably positioned into a supportive device that pulls behind their neck gently distracting the joints in the upper part of their neck. As more tension is used, distraction forces affect joints further down the spine. It is through careful calibration and positioning that we are able to apply just enough tension to relieve symptoms.
Our therapists at Spine + Body will be able to assess if your condition will respond to traction. Contact our office to make and appointment today on 07 5531 6422 or email us and we will generally respond within the hour.