Spinal Decompression for Back Pain Relief - Patients' Advice: Health Insurance, Sciatica, and Pain Relief

Spinal Decompression for Back Pain Relief - Patients' Advice: Part I

Back-to-Back: Patients share tips on experiences with spinal decompression therapy

Read our peer-reviewed article about spinal decompression:

All About Spinal Decompression Therapy

Want to know more about spinal decompression from those who have been affected most?

In our Back-to-Back section, patients share tips and advice about using non-surgical spinal decompression to treat their back problems. Please read our Back-to-Back pages or visit our message boards to discuss spinal decompression, including the different types of chiropractic equipment used for this treatment.

The right price for my treatment

My chiro charges $35 per treatment of decompression...priced just right!

From: backtoback

Health insurance should reimburse complimentary treatments

Our center uses spinal decompression with great success because we choose our patients wisely. I agree that not everyone with a disc bulge is a candidate for decompression. The treatment must be preceded by soft tissue muscle work to relax deep core muscles to reduce the body's reflex reaction to guard. Cold laser therapy and general PT can further help reduce pain and guarding to allow decompression to work. It's a shame that insurance companies disallow reimbursement for this. Once again, they don't come through for their clients.

From: Doc V – Virginia, USA

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Sciatica relief with decompression

My sciatica was so bad I couldn't sleep at night. My lower legs ached and my feet were asleep every morning. I tried de-compression and it worked wonderfully. After 4 sessions, I could sleep without pain. The fact that my chiropractor only charges $50 a treatment and you don't have to sign up for a package is also great.

From: Lynn – Kansas, USA

Is pain relief as complete as advertised?

All of this being said, we must also consider the source. If you no longer have "back pain" why would you be searching on Back Pain websites? Most people who have had success with this treatment will not be looking on a website like this, they would be enjoying life pain-free!

From: Heather - Texas, USA

Decompression is another name for traction

It appears that "Spinal Decompression" is the hot topic in the treatment of neck pain and back pain especially in the field of chiropractic. I decided to do some research to see what all the talk was about. I realized that this is a rebadged name for something physical therapists have been offering since World War II: (TRACTION !!!!) Recent studies have found traction to be ineffective for the relief of pain in the lumbar spine. Traction for the treatment of bulging discs can actually aggravate the condition. Please don't get ripped off and believe everything you read about. Google this and see for yourself.

SAM – Physical Therapist – New York, USA

Pain relief took time in my experience of decompression therapy

I tried spinal decompression with A LOT of hesitation. I was paying around $100 a session. I was very skeptical after about 10 sessions, but I continued. After about 13 sessions, my back started to feel better. I have a ruptured disk at L5-S1. After many months of this therapy I am finally completely off the decompression and have full use of my legs EXCEPT that I will relapse if I trying running again. So I have my basic mobility back but not my activity back. At least I can walk forever without any significant pain, mostly just tired feet :)

From: Dan V. – Washington, USA

Cost of decompression is worth it

Expensive???? Decompression is NOT expensive. Apparently none of you have been to your dentist lately. I guess nobody cares about $2000 whitening or cosmetic procedures. I had a patient come in after she got her $16,000 cosmetic treatment plan from her dentist! I have been to seminars where they train support staff to re-finance your mortgage to pay for your "cosmetic" plan. This is the tip of the iceberg! I won't get into the absurd plastic surgery market...."Lets think about this....$4,000 and you can walk again and pick up your kids again.....or "10,000 for a pretty smile! So while you obsess over your "peer reviewed research with your pearly whites", decompression is making headway in both medical and alternative arenas. Best of luck.

From: K

Accu spina machine may be unsafe

I had a very bad experience with Accu Spina. The machine malfunctioned and over pulled. Then a part broke and there was a loud bang as the swing arm on the cervical end came crashing down. I jumped but my head was restrained and I pulled a muscle in my mid back. I needed NSAIDS, Vicodin and muscle relaxers. Google FDA accuspina or click this link. The machine is poorly made with poor materials. The engineers who designed this piece of crap should find another field of work.

From: Ball – North Carolina, USA

No better after many decompression treatments

I had 24 treatments with a Triton DTS Machine in January, 2007. No improvement. I tried again in the September to End of November of this year, but after 24 more treatments, I am slightly worse than when I started. The claims of 86% success rate seem suspicious to me. I must move on to the Artificial Disc replacement treatment if I am to have a chance of recovery.

From: WHW – Texas, USA

Decompression may cause disc damage

Check out the September/October 2007(Volume 31, No.5) issue of Skeptical Inquirer. There's an article about spinal decompression. It does seem that research has found it can make pain worse and cause further disk damage. Spinal Decompression has never been peer-reviewed in a published reputable medical journal.

From: Colleen – Illinois, USA

Taking a chance on decompression for chronic back pain

Have had 7 visits ($160 each). Have had chronic back pain for 20 plus years due to being an avid golfer. Problems with S1, L1 L2, L3, L4, most bulging discs and some Degenerative Joint. So I feel sore after the visits and finally after this visit got straight, waiting to see if 2-3 more treatments will work even better. This Chiro does do stim and laser with each treatment. Wish me luck....This is at least a chance!

From: Walleeee – Florida, USA

Need advice or want to give some? Communicate with others about decompression therapy

* Note: This page expresses the experiences and opinions of patients, not doctors. The Back-to-Back forum is provided because we think people often have very practical advice and insights to share that can benefit other patients who have similar back problems. This section has not been peer reviewed by our Medical Advisory Board, and is provided for your informational purposes only.

If you have questions about your specific condition or treatment approach, please go through this site to read peer-reviewed health information about spinal conditions, diagnosis and treatment options. The quickest way to locate information on the site is to use the “keyword search” located in the upper left hand corner of each page. Also, if you want to talk online with others who may be in a similar situation, please go to the Message Board.

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