Autotraction versus manual traction in patients with prolapsed lumbar intervertebral discs
Ljunggren AE, Weber H, Larsen S
Forty-nine patients with lumbago-sciatica and prolapsed lumbar intervertebral discs, comparable concerning anamnestical and clinical data were randomized for autotraction and manual traction given by the same therapist for a period of one week while strict bed rest was prescribed. A blind overall assessment performed immediately after the traction period, after two weeks follow-up training and three months after hospitalization showed that the two traction modalities are equally efficient. As treatment for hospitalized patients with lumbar intervertebral disc prolapses the relatively simple manual traction variety should be preferred, if any. Traction is suggested to be used as a prognostical aid. Pain intensity was significantly reduced in all body parts. About one fourth of patients avoided operation. After two years there was no recurrence of symptoms
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