Comparison between effectiveness of mechanical and manualtraction combined with mobilization and exercise therapyin patients with Cervical Radiculopathy

Syed Rehan Iftikhar Bukhari, Syed Shakil Urrehman, Shakeel Ahmad, Aamer Naeem


Background and Objective: Cervical radiculopathy is a common neuro-musculo-skeletal disorder causing pain and disability. Traction is part of the evidence based manual physical therapy management due to its mechanical nature, type of traction and parameters related to its applicability and are still to be explored more through research. Our objective was to determine the Effects of Mechanical versus Manual Traction in Manual Physical Therapy combined with segmental mobilization and exercise therapy in the physical therapy management of Patients with Cervical Radiculopathy.

Methods: This randomized control trial was conducted at department of physical therapy and rehabilitation, Rathore Hospital Faisalabad, from February to July 2015. Inclusion criteria were both male and female patients with evident symptoms of cervical spine radiculopathy and age ranged between 20-70 years. The exclusion criteria were Patients with history of trauma, neck pain without radiculopathy, aged less than 20 and more than 70. A total of 72 patients with cervical radiculopathy were screened out as per the inclusion criteria, 42 patients were randomly selected and placed into two groups by toss and trial method, and only 36 patients completed the study, while 6 dropped out. The mechanical traction was applied in group A and manual traction in group B along with common intervention of segmental mobilization and exercise therapy in both groups for 6 weeks. The patient’s outcomes were assessed by self reported NPRS and NDI at the baseline and after completion of 06 weeks exercise program at 3 days per week. The data was analyzed through SPSS version-21, and paired T test was applied at 95% level significance to determine the statistical deference between two groups.

Results: Clinically the group of patients treated with mechanical traction managed pain (mean pre 6.26, mean post 1.43), and disability (mean pre 24.43 and mean post 7.26) more effectively as compared with the group of patients treated with manual traction (Pain mean pre 6.80, mean post 3.85 and disability mean pre 21.92 and post 12.19). Statistically the results of both mechanical and manual traction techniques are equally significant in group A and B for pain and disability (p-value less than 0.05).

Conclusion: If patients of cervical radiculopathy treated with mechanical traction, segmental mobilization, and exercise therapy will manage pain and disability more effectively than treated with manual traction, segmental mobilization, and exercise therapy.


How to cite this:Bukhari SRI, Shakil-ur-Rehamn S, Ahmad S, Naeem A. Comparison between effectiveness of mechanical and manual traction combined with mobilization and exercise therapy in patients with Cervical Radiculopathy. Pak J Med Sci. 2016;32(1):31-34.   doi:

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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