Disc Restoration Therapy

Dr. Ferrigno specializes in an advanced, non-surgical disc restoration therapy, relieving back pain, sciatica, degenerative disc disease, and herniation. His five-step therapy combines a variety of treatments into a synergistic program considered the leading non-surgical treatment for disc conditions.


What is disc restoration therapy?

The DRT (Disc Restoration Therapy) program consists of a five-step (S.P.I.N.E.) protocol:

  1. Spinal Decompression — rehydrate and heal the disc
  2. Physiotherapeutic Modalities — Electric muscle stimulation, ice, and cold laser therapy
  3. Inter-segmental Mobilization — Restore motion and function to spinal joints
  4. Nutritional Support — Naturally support disc health
  5. Exercise Rehabilitation — Stretch and strengthen supporting core musculature

These five steps work synergistically to give you the best non-surgical/non-invasive approach to restoring health to your injured disc.

Why five treatments? What does each do?

Dr. Ferrigno’s five-step disc restoration therapy is one of the most effective methods of restoring health to an injured disc. It combines decompression to specific discs in the spine resulting in re-hydration and healing of the injured disc, along with customizable therapies to reduce inflammation, restore motion to the spine, and supporting core musculature.

Spinal Decompression:

Dr. Ferrigno was the first doctor in the state of California to be nationally certified in spinal decompression, and he has performed over 25,000 decompression treatments. His state-of-the-art spinal decompression table, called the DRX9000, applies gentle stretching pressure at a specific angle for each disc, sensing muscle tension several thousand times per second in order to prevent muscle spasm or guarding (tightening). This causes the vacuum effect bringing in new fluid and nutrients to heal and re-hydrate the injured disc, also reducing the size of the bulging or herniated disc to create more room for the exiting nerve roots. It provides much more precise targeting than traction or inversion tables.

Physiotherapeutic Modalities:

To help speed up the healing process within the discs, Dr. Ferrigno uses a variety of anti-inflammatory treatments, including ice, muscle stimulation, and cold laser therapy. The Multi Radiance Technology™ laser stimulates the natural healing response in your cells, leading to increased circulation and decreased pain. The laser treatment is comfortable and does not injure skin or any other part of a patient’s body.

Inter-segmental Mobilization:

Bay Area Disc Centers utilize highly trained chiropractic physicians to perform gentle adjustments with specific forces, mobilizing joints, restoring motion, relieving pain, decreasing inflammation, and taking the pressure off pinched nerves. Light massages while you are being treated will help to reduce muscle spasms, decrease trigger points (knots), relieve muscle tension, and relax muscles so that postural imbalances can be addressed and other treatments can be more effective. Adjustments may or may not be a part of your overall care plan.

Nutritional Support:

When medical history or test results indicate that a patient suffers from nutritional deficiency or toxicity, Dr. Ferrigno offers an individualized diet and nutrition program. This can help eliminate toxins from the patient’s system to decrease pain and inflammation, speed up healing, and improve overall health.

Exercise Rehabilitation:

Once the disc has started to heal and patients are experiencing less pain, Dr. Ferrigno designs an individualized exercise plan to strengthen the muscles around the disc, supporting it better and preventing it from getting re-injured. Exercise and stretching become part of each patient’s lifelong spinal health maintenance routine.

How long does disc restoration therapy last?

The program itself is usually a two-month process. Dr. Ferrigno builds his treatment protocols in accordance with the available research on spinal decompression, which shows that 24 visits over about 8 weeks can yield predictable and desirable results. Following the two-month program, Dr. Ferrigno will recommend maintenance tailored to your lifestyle and condition.

Spinal injuries aren’t cured; they’re managed. Dr. Ferrigno recommends an effective two-month program to heal the discs and get rid of painful symptoms, followed by a month or so of maintenance to keep things moving, functioning, stretched, and hydrated. Maintenance will help prevent more complicated problems down the line.

What does it feel like?

At Bay Area Disc Center, everything feels great. Most patients feel like they’re at a spa, so much so that many patients fall asleep during treatment. Our guiding principle is simple: if it hurts, we don’t do it. Dr. Ferrigno treats patients well into their 90s. He’s performed spinal decompressions for more than 10 years, providing over 25,000 treatments, without severe incident.

How do I know if I qualify for treatment?

Dr. Ferrigno offers free consultation and MRI-review. If you’re concerned about a possible spinal injury, feeling the effects of sciatica, or just want to take preventative steps, you’re invited to make an appointment today. Dr. Ferrigno will review your medical history, provide an examination, review your MRI, and determine if you qualify for treatment.

For the most part, if you’re suffering from degenerative disc disease, a bulging or herniated disc, or arthritis in your spine, you’re likely going to qualify for care. However, there are certain conditions, such as spine fractures or bone cancer, that can make a patient ineligible for some treatments. Dr. Ferrigno will talk you through your options in that case and help you find the best care available.