Spinal Decompression

If you’re struggling with chronic neck pain, back pain, or sciatic nerve pain, and you want to find relief without taking medication or resorting to surgery, spinal decompression therapy may be exactly what you’re looking for. Spinal decompression involves the gentle mechanical stretching of your spine to relieve the underlying cause of spine-related pain safely and effectively. At Latronica Chiropractic in Furlong, Pennsylvania, Dr. Albert Latronica offers spinal decompression therapy to patients from the greater Bucks County region.

Spinal Decompression Q & A

by Albert Latronica, DC

What is spinal decompression therapy?

Spinal decompression is a therapeutic treatment technique that’s performed on a traction table, using the same basic principal to stretch your spine that chiropractors have been using for decades. The main goal of this therapy is to relieve pain and promote an optimal healing environment for degenerating, bulging, or ruptured spinal discs.

How does the therapy work?

Spinal decompression therapy works by slowly, steadily, and gently stretching your spinal column to relieve pressure on the discs that sit between each vertebra of your spine. This stretching action creates negative pressure inside the discs that causes them to retract, allowing nutrient-rich fluids and oxygen to flow inside, where they naturally stimulate healing. For many patients affected by disc injuries, spinal decompression therapy is a safe and effective alternative to surgery.

What conditions can spinal decompression address?

Spinal decompression therapy is intended to help restore function and health to spinal discs. It’s often used to help heal the following:

Bulging discs
Discs that have pushed outside of their usual space in the spinal canal can put pressure on nerves and cause pain at the site or in other areas of your body. Left untreated, a bulging disc can rupture.

Herniated discs
Discs that crack and ooze some of their soft interior gel have ruptured, or herniated. Herniated discs can irritate nearby nerves, and may even cause a burning pain that radiates from your lower back down into your legs.

Degenerated discs
Discs that are affected by age-related degeneration may have low fluid or tears in their tough outer shell. They may also be accompanied by painful bone spurs on your spine.

Because disc problems can lead to a wide variety of symptoms, correcting a disc condition through spinal decompression can also help relieve associated symptoms, including pain in your neck, shoulders, or lower back, as well as sciatica and numbness or tingling in your legs.

What does the therapy involve?

Spinal decompression therapy is done on a motorized table. The upper half of the table remains fixed, while the lower half moves when it’s activated. To treat a disc problem that’s affecting your lower back, Dr. Latronica will place a harness around your hips, then attach the other end to the table, near your feet. After activating the table, the lower portion gently slides back and forth to slowly decompress your spine and alleviate pressure. During this slow, easy motion, you’ll feel your spine being stretched and relaxed intermittently.

Each therapy session lasts for about 20 minutes, and most patients need 20-25 sessions, scheduled over the course of four to six weeks, for optimal benefits.

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