Spinal Decompression - Traction machine


Spinal traction is a form of decompression therapy that relieves pressure on the spine and is used to treat herniated discs, sciatica, degenerative disc disease, pinched nerves and many other back conditions.

The word traction is a derivative of the Latin “tractico”, which means a process of drawing or pulling.  The goal of spinal traction is to stretch the spine to create more space for nerves where they exit the spinal column and relieve pressure on the intervertebral discs between or the small spinal joints themselves.

Neck and lower back pain can sometimes refer peripherally into the arm and hands or legs and feet and is occasionally associated with muscle weakness or pins and needles.  This can be due to spinal nerve root irritation or compression associated with a disc injury or joint dysfunction.  Spinal traction and be an effective treatment to relieve the irritation on the nerve.

In summary, spinal traction has several effects.  For instance, traction can help:

  • Decrease compression forces and help distract vertebral bodies. It can help mobilise the facet joints in the spine. This can also increase the (intervertebral) space where the spinal nerves exit out of the spine and help decrease irritation of these nerves


  • Enhance nourishment of the disc and nerve


  • Decrease muscle spasm


  • Stretch the muscles and connective tissues along the spine


  • Increase circulation


  • Decrease the sensitivity and pain in the joints of the spine


  • Reduce nerve pain and weakness down the arm and legs from disc and nerve injuries; radiculopathies


It is important to be carefully assessed by your physiotherapist to determine how appropriate spinal traction is in your case. This is dependent on your signs and symptoms, the acuity of your injury and stage of healing, your past and current medical history, and your response to previous treatment. When carefully and appropriately selected for by you and your physiotherapist, spinal traction can be an effective treatment choice.