Cervical Traction, General Guidelines

Comfortrac Cervical Traction

ComforTrac Cervical Traction

Cervical Traction Protocols

The ComforTrac Cervical Traction Device is intended to treat a musculoskeletal or neurological impairment of the cervical spine to relieve pain, relax muscle spasms, and decompress spinal structures.


Cervical Traction should be avoided in any condition of the cervical spine where movement can aggravate the condition or result in spinal instability, spinal injury and/or nerve root injury at risk for causing paralysis or ischemia.


1. Determine the patient’s body weight. Tension should be up to 7% – 10% of body weight.

2. Determine the amount of neck flexion that is necessary and adjust the traction machine accordingly:
Upper cervical region = 10 degrees (slide stand in upper most position)
Middle cervical region = 15 degrees (slide stand in middle position)
Lower cervical region = 20 degrees (slide stand in lower most position)

3. Remove any jewelry (especially earrings), eyeglasses, and anything else in the cervical region that may get in the way or create discomfort for the patient. Loosen the shirt collar or have the patient change into a gown in order to better expose the neck region. (Cervical traction is only effective if applied if the traction unit is in direct contact with the skin of the neck, not over clothing.)

4. Instruct the patient to lay supine on the treatment table with the neck between the neck wedges of the cervical traction device. Adjust the neck wedges appropriately so that they are snug around the patient’s neck. If necessary have the patient sit up and adjust the neck wedges and then have
the patient lie back down.

5. Use the hand pump to increase pressure to appropriate level. (Please refer to the protocols within this section for guidelines on the tension amount and the treatment time for specific diagnoses.)