Because of that negative pressure, disc material that has protruded or herniated can be assisted back within the normal confines of the disc, and permit healing to occur. Pressure is released off of inflamed nerve roots allowing the inflammation to subside.
A specific force predetermined by your physiotherapist gently separates the bones of the lower back or neck. This relieves the pressure on the outer fibres on the disc. With repeated treatments over a period of time this allows for the outer fibres to heal and hold the gel-like material back in the center of the disc. Additionally, this negative pressure forces nutrients and fluid into the disc to assist with rehydration and healing of the disc. By altering the position of the traction pull and the height of the table we may also localize the traction force to a particular segment of the spine and in a specific direction.
Treatments are painless. In fact some individuals get immediate relief from their pain once decompression takes place. In addition to traction it is important that you comply with the specific home exercises prescribed by your physiotherapist to minimize the stresses on the disc, and partake in an appropriate strengthening and stabilization program when appropriate.