To account for the attention time difference, therapist contact, support, and expectations, the control group was treated with a placebo treatment using a folded or partially rolled, standard cervical hydrocollator towel located in the mid or lower cervical spine as an intervention to mimic the Denneroll orthotic traction. The ridges on the hydrocollator towel mimic the fulcrum bumps on the Denneroll orthotic, without applying significant extension bending of the cervical spine.

The treating therapist, for both the control and intervention groups, was unblinded to the treatment method but the participants and the examination assessor who conducted the measurements were blinded for their specific group allocation. Further, participants were not allowed to inform the assessor of which treatment they had received, and the assessor was not allowed to ask. For both the placebo and Denneroll intervention, the duration of each session began at three-minutes per session and incrementally increased 1–2 min per session until the goal of 20-min per session was attained. Interventions were applied three times per week for 10-weeks (30 total sessions) in a supervised setting. See Fig. 1 (informed consent to publish the content of this report along with the accompanying images and copyright was obtained from all participants and parties). The entire control or intervention program was delivered individually, face to face by the same physiotherapist, with 20 years of experience who had received training in these techniques; this was done to minimize inter-therapist variation, enhance fidelity and to maintain the same patient physiotherapist relationship. Compliance with the Denneroll and placebo traction interventions was calculated as the total number of sessions attended/total number of sessions available.

On the far left, the Denneroll orthotic is shown with a mid-cervical spine placement. In the middle, the placebo as a rolled cervical hydrocollator towel is shown placed in the mid-cervical spine. On the far right, a closeup of the placebo treatment is shown for the control group as a cervical hydro-collator towel.

Copyright CBP Seminars, Inc. All rights reserved, reprinted with permission, and informed consent from all persons depicted was obtained.

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