What is Spinal Decompression Therapy?


Spinal decompression therapy is FDA approved and has been clinically proven with an 86% success rate for pain associated with bulging or herniated discs....even after failed surgery. It is a non-surgical traction therapy that can isolate a spinal disc, putting it under negative pressure, and therefore create a vacuum effect within that same disc.

What can this vacuum effect do?

The vacuum effect accomplishes two things. From a mechanical standpoint, disc material that has protruded outside the confines of the normal disc area can be pulled back into the disc using negative pressure. Also, this vacuum stimulates the growth of blood supply, secondarily stimulating the healing response. This results in pain reduction and proper healing at the injured site.

How is Spinal Decompression different from regular traction?

The DTS computer is the key. It controls the variations in the traction, allowing for spinal decompression and eliminating muscle contraction and subsequent compression that is typical in traditional traction devices.The pre-programmed patterns for axial distraction allows for higher levels of spinal decompression and disc rehydration.

What does a typical treatment session consist of?


The specific treatment plan is determined by your health care provider after a comprehensive examination and evaluation. Based on current research, the best results have been achieved using a protocol of 20 sessions over a 6 to 7 week period.Each session of spinal decompression therapy takes 30-40 minutes. Additionally, you may be assigned other strengthening and therapeutic exercises as an adjunct to this therapy.

Who is not eligible for spinal decompression therapy?

Pregnant women, patients with severe osteoporosis, severe obesity, or severe nerve damage are not candidates for spinal decompression therapy. Patients who have had spinal surgery with instrumentation (screws, plates, cages) are also not eligible to receive this treatment. However, spinal decompression therapy after bone fusion or non-fusion surgery can be performed.

Screen shot 2010-04-10 at 7.33.19 PM.png

Are there any medical studies that document the effectiveness of spinal decompression therapy?

Yes! The Eyerman study documented by MRI up to 90% reduction of disc herniation in 10 of 14 cases. The Sealy-Borgmeyer study reported that 86% of ruptured disc patients achieved "good" (50-89%) and "excellent" (90-100%) results after spinal decompression therapy. The MRI pictured to the right shows how a herniated disc can be reduced using spinal decompression.

Does my insurance cover the spinal decompression cost?

As with regular Physical Therapy visits, some carriers will cover certain treatments, and some will not. If your insurance does cover spinal decompression therapy we will gladly bill them for you. We will discuss with you, individually, how much your insurance will cover and what the co-payment or deductible may be.