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What is the difference between spinal decompression and traction?

Question from Dr. David on April 27th, 2011 @ 7:39AM

There are two main spinal components that are effectively treated using traction and decompression. One is the disc (or intervertberal cartilage cushion) and the other is the facet (gliding joint component). Spinal decompression is particularly effective for the disc because as it tractions the spine, it HOLDS the traction for a prolonged yet specified time otherwise known as a "dwell" time. The longer the vertbrae are held apart, the greater the vacuum forces produced within the disc. Conversely, intermittent traction, or standard traction does not hold the segments apart and rather pumps them back and forth. This pull and release of the spinal segments (without prolonged holding) is better suited for the rehab of the facet or gliding surface. Both components should be addressed when rehabilaitating any spinal compression injury.

Answer from The Neck & Back Pain Institute of Coral Springs on April 27th, 2011 @ 7:59AM

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