May 5, 2018 - Released

The Cox Technique: How Does It Work and What Does It Help


Few things on this earth are more uncomfortable and debilitating than back pain. No matter how you sit, sleep, or stand; you just can’t get to that spot where the pain is. Cox Technique chiropractors have been around since the 1960s. The technique, developed by Dr. James Cox, is also known as “flexion-distraction” and involves the use of a special table to stretch and decompress parts of the spine.

How Does It Work?

When you come for an appointment, your orthopedic specialists back pain chiropractor will ask you to lie face-down on the special adjustment table. The table has various moving parts which allow for both gentle manipulations of the spine, and movement of the head and waist.

Cox Technique chiropractors are unique in the industry, in that no sharp “back cracking” or intense pressure is used. The practitioner will focus on one vertebra at a time, working through the normal range of motion for each section. They may also utilize trigger point massage and manual distraction manipulation.

The Cox technique works by decompressing the components of the spine including discs, nerves, bones, and ligaments. It has been shown to reduce pressure between the discs too -192mmHg, a measurement based on the amount of Mercury present. When injured, discs can have up to 256 mmHg. Additionally, the technique increases space and circulation in the spinal canal by up to 28%. The goal is to recover a full, and pain-free range of motion.

back pain chiropractor

What Conditions Does It Help?

The Cox technique is often used to treat herniated or ruptured discs (also known as “slipped” discs). This condition is where a protective disc between the vertebra is protruding from the outer ring of the spinal column and is often the result of injury or age. Slipped discs cause radiating pain and weakness in the back, arms, and legs, often on only one side of the body.

Your back pain chiropractor may also recommend the Cox Technique for the treatment of Sciatica. This debilitating condition is the result of a pinched or inflamed nerve and causes intense pain in the buttock or leg on one side of the body.

Flexion-distraction treatments are also indicated for; Central Stenosis, the narrowing of the spinal canal; Facet Syndrome, also known as Osteoarthritis; Spondylolisthesis, a slipped vertebra; and degenerative disc disease.

Although the treatment focuses on the vertebra of the spine, the Cox Technique is not just for back pain. Patients experiencing pain or weakness in the neck, arms, legs, and hips can also benefit from a visit to a Cox, Technique chiropractor. They can work to reduce pain associated with injuries to these specific areas. Or help to treat an underlying condition that is causing radiating pain.

Overall, one of the most popular aspects of the Cox Technique for patients is that the movements are gentle. In fact, many people report finding the experience relaxing. Not something you usually hear from your friend after a visit to the old “back-cracker.” Last, but certainly not least, it could save you from expensive, painful, and often ineffective surgery.

About The Author

Francis Burns

Francis Burns is an avid writer from Louisiana. With a Bachelor's in English and a background in journalism, Francis has been writing for a variety of media outlets for the last five years. He specializes in stories about the local culture and loves to fill his work with inspiring words. When not writing, Francis enjoys exploring the outdoors of Louisiana and photographing nature.

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