Inversion tables … good or bad? sponsored by The Spine Center

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Spring is right around the corner, and with it comes outdoor sports. Unfortunately, that sometimes brings back pain, according to Meegan Domangue, PA-C.

So, do inversion tables work? That’s a question that any medical practitioner who has ever treated a number of spine patients has been asked. The answer is sometimes. Numerous studies have been done to determine their effectiveness on acute pain and/or chronic pain of the back. To date, most research, including the most well-designed studies, fail to show a significant long-term benefit to inversion therapy.

However, many patients seen in a clinic setting will swear otherwise. Some patients who have suffered from spinal problems for years depend on daily use of an inversion table for relief. Others inquire about the therapy from hearsay of friends, neighbors, or relatives who attest that it will cure their pain.

The theory behind inversion dates back to Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine, in 400 BC. Hippocrates would hang people upside down on ladders to “stretch the spine.” Inversion devices and techniques used today are obviously more advanced, more comfortable and safer. Traction is the practice of using gravity to slowly attempt to stretch the spine, allowing more room for the discs, nerves, ligaments, etc. Click here for more information.