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Traction

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Synonyms

Intermittent; progressive adjustive; manual or continuous traction; Autotraction; Gravity-Assisted Traction; self traction; unloading

Definition

Traction is a treatment for spinal pain. It involves applying a pulling force to the lower limbs or to the head, in order to separate the vertebrae of the spine and / or to stretch the surrounding muscles and ligaments. The traction force may be delivered manually, or via weights, pulleys or mechanical devices as a continuous, sustained, intermittent or intermittent pulsed force.

Characteristics

Mechanism

No mechanism has been established whereby traction might relieve pain. Nevertheless, proponents of traction believe that it works, and have speculated on its mechanism of effect (Krause et al. 2000).

There is clear evidence that spinal traction does separate vertebral bodies. However, in the lumbar spine much of the separation observed arises from flattening of the lumbar lordosis (Twomey 1985). In the cervical spine, 30 pounds of...

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References

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© 2007 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

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Mercer, S. (2007). Traction. In: Schmidt, R., Willis, W. (eds) Encyclopedia of Pain. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-540-29805-2_4541

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-540-29805-2_4541

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-540-43957-8

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-540-29805-2

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