Why Spinal Decompression

by Dr. Karen Cann on November 9, 2009

post1-imageSpinal Decompression is a non-surgical, non-invasive treatment for certain types of chronic back pain. Mechanical decompression works by slowly and gently stretching the spine, taking pressure off compressed discs and vertebrae. Spinal decompression is one of the most exciting medical treatments developed in many years since it demonstrates good statistical results for long term pain relief.

Spinal Decompression Conditions

The most common spinal condition treated with decompression treatment is a herniated disc. Spinal compression can cause disc herniations to expand, putting pressure on surrounding spinal nerve roots. Decompression treatment takes the pressure off these damaged discs so that the disc bulge will shrink back closer to its original size.

Degenerative disc disease is also a common condition treated with decompression therapy. Loss of disc height can be exacerbated by spinal compression, causing the vertebral bodies to move closer together. This can cause nerve compression and other forms of common back pain. Decompression eliminates the overwhelming pressure on degenerated discs reducing or eliminating painful symptoms.

Facet joint syndrome is yet another condition treated with spinal decompression. Of all the conditions, this one shows the least promising results for permanent pain relief. Conceptually, facet syndrome causes pain due to arthritic changes in the vertebral bones. Decompression helps to create more space between the vertebrae, hopefully reducing painful symptoms.

For more information about cervical or lumbar non surgical spinal decompression, e-mail us or call us at (850) 916-9304.

What is Spinal Decompression Therapy?

Actually, NASA first noted the effects of spinal decompression! During a space travel mission, astronauts noticed that they were relieved of back pain while in the anti-gravity state. They also found that disc height was increased during space flight. Spinal decompression therapy is a non-surgical, comfortable traction therapy for the relief of back and leg pain or neck and arm pain. During this procedure, by cycling through distraction and relaxation phases and by proper positioning, a spinal disc can be isolated and placed under negative pressure, causing a vacuum effect within it… like sucking the jelly back into the doughnut. At the same time, decompression strengthens the fibro cartilage bands that hold the nucleus in place.

This therapy is also an effective treatment for herniated disc, degenerative disc, Facet syndrome, sciatica, post-surgical patients, and spinal stenosis.

Spinal Decompression Therapy

In the past, a patient suffering from disc problems usually was given pain medications, instructed to refrain from physical activities, referred for physical therapy, and when they weren’t progressing they were sent for spinal surgery. Conservative chiropractic care proved very helpful in many cases, yet there have been some cases when surgery seemed to be the only other option…

For those who suffer with low back pain, neck pain, or carpal tunnel, Spinal Decompression Therapy is an effective treatment for these conditions and may delay or eliminate the need for back surgery.

Research indicates the disc is responsible for a significant number of lumbar/leg pain and neck/arm pain syndromes. Compression increases intradiscal pressure leading to annular compromise and possible extrusion of nuclear material.

If I chose spinal decompression therapy, what are my chances for success?
According to The American Journal of Pain Management, spinal decompression offers an 86% chance for success for patients with a disc herniation. The chance for success with spinal decompression jumps to 90% for patients with cases of sciatica, stenosis, deterioration, and arthrosis. In comparison, the reported overall failure rate for fusion-type back surgery is 30% and is 37.3% for non-fusion back surgery (results of research on the aftermath of back surgery reported by the Orthopedic Clinic of North America in 1995).

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