About Dr. Ho's Decompression Belt

By Derek Lakin
HighYa Staff
Published on: Jun 12, 2014

If you recently saw an advertisement or watched an infomercial for Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt, you’re probably wondering if the traction it provides really can help treat your chronic, acute back pain. And if so, does Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt really make the process as easy as it claims?

To put the claims of Dr. Ho’s Compression Belt to the test, and to find out if it’s worth your hard-earned money, we did some in-depth research, and here’s what we found out.

How Dr. Ho's Decompression Belt Claims to Work

Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt, also known as the HoPhysio Belt, is a 2-in-1 decompression belt that claims to provide gentle clinical-grade traction and decompression therapy (hence the “2-in-1” designation), which is claimed to provide relief from chronic, acute back pain resulting from degenerative, herniated, or bulging discs. In fact, the product’s website claims that this technology has been endorsed by medical professionals for use on patients with upper and lower back pain, which is something we’ll discuss more in the Bottom Line section.

In addition, Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt is also claimed to provide other benefits, such as:

  • Keeps weight off your lower back
  • Stabilizes your lower back and improves posture
  • Strengthens your back and core
  • Stretches lower back muscles
  • Relieves stiffness

After placing Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt around your waist, you’ll then need to attach the pump and inflate. Once this occurs, the product’s website claims that the belt will expand vertically, which tractions your lower back while decompressing spinal discs and relaxing the muscles surrounding them. As such, Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt claims to help you reduce your visits to the doctor, as well as to avoid surgery and overdependence on pain medications.

For the first week, Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt should be used 3-4 times per day, for 20-30 minutes each session, which can be increased if necessary thereafter. The product’s website claims that it can also be worn under your clothes, which is claimed to allow it to relieve pain wherever you are (including in bed), while also giving you the ability to be more active.

Dr. Ho’s Compression Belt is claimed to be safe for use by anyone, regardless of age or size, although you should always consult with your physician beforehand.

Dr. Ho's Decompression Belt Pricing & Refund Policy

Dr. Ho’s Compression Belt is priced at $179.96, and while it appears that standard shipping is free, this couldn’t be confirmed since a total isn’t provided on the checkout page. However, rush shipping will cost you an additional $34.99.

You can also purchase packages such as:

  • Deluxe Package: $209.94 – Includes DR-HO'S Neck Comforter, Spinal Secrets DVD, and "Relief" Book by Dr. Michael Ho.
  • Ultimate Package: $304.94 – Includes everything found in the Deluxe Package, in addition to DR-HO'S Neck & Shoulder Shiatsu Massager, and Bonus Car Adapter for Shiatsu Massager.

Regardless of which package you choose, Dr. Ho’s Compression Belt is available in 2 sizes:

  • Size A for 25”-41” waists
  • Size B for 42”-55” waists

Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt comes with a 30-day money back guarantee, less S&H charges, as well as a 90-day warranty. In order to initiate the refund process or to file a warranty claim, you’ll need to contact customer service at 877-374-6669.

Keep in mind that during our research, we also found Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt for sale on Amazon.com, Newegg.com, and several other online retailers for as little as $95.

Important note: Since Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt is considered a medical device, you may want to check with your insurance provider to see if they provide coverage for “lumbar support belts.”

What Do Other Consumers Have to Say About Dr. Ho's Decompression Belt?

Overall, it appears that Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt has mixed online reviews, which tend to lean toward the negative side. Some of the most common complaints we encountered included that it is bulky, uncomfortable, and hot (see more about this in the Bottom Line section), and that it doesn’t provide results. Specifically, many customers stated that if the belt did provide any results, pain reappeared soon after taking it off. In fact, many of these same customers stated that it doesn’t provide any more support or pain-relief than elastic belts, which are much less expensive.

It should also be noted that learning the truth about other customers’ experiences with Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt can be a time-consuming process, since you’ll encounter numerous affiliate websites during your research.

What’s the Bottom Line About Dr. Ho's Decompression Belt?

Now that we’ve outlined all the details surrounding Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt, let’s get to the bottom line: Is it worth your hard-earned money? As with most devices of this type, the answer is that it depends. Here’s why:

First, decompression for back pain, whether applied at home or in a doctor’s office, has not been conclusively shown to work. This is because, as with any other treatment, the relief it provides is highly dependent on a number of factors, including what’s causing your back pain, where the injury occurred, how long you’ve had the injury, etc.

To support this, according to this article, “the benefit of [spinal decompression] treatments is not established.” However, the British Medical Journal took it one step further in 2004 when they published that, “Routine physiotherapy seemed to be no more effective than one session of assessment and advice from a physiotherapist.” As you can see, while the Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt website claims that its technology is endorsed by medical professionals, this doesn’t mean that it’s been proven to work, and you may not experience any pain relief from using it.

Finally, keep in mind that, according to the product’s FAQ, it must be worn over a layer of light clothing. This means that if you venture out into public with it on, you’ll likely want to wear another piece of clothing to conceal it, which could be problematic during the hotter months of the year. The FAQ also notes that you’ll receive faster and more pronounced results if you wear the belt while laying down, which means that if you’re expecting to receive good results while going about your day, you may be disappointed.

Bottom line: If you’re desperate for non-surgical, non-drug relief from your lower back pain, Dr. Ho’s Decompression Belt may provide you with relief. However, based on the numerous negative customer reviews we read, it’s really a flip of the coin as to whether or not it will effectively work. Instead, you might first try a much less expensive elastic belt and go from there.

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Read 35 Dr. Ho's Decompression Belt Customer Reviews and Complaints

Write a Review
Average Consumer Rating: 2.2
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 8 4 star: 3 3 star: 0 2 star: 2 1 star:  22
Bottom Line: 31% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 35
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  • 7 out 9 people found this review helpful

    Finally some relief!

    • London, England,
    • May 22, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    After walking around limping for 6 months with what I was told was hip arthritis, an MRI divulged that I had been suffering from a disc tear between my L4 and L5. This tear was bulging and irritating the sciatic nerve. Sheer misery. I tried my husband's back support belt and it seemed to help. Since he needed it himself I decided to buy my own. My physio mentioned the decompression belt, something that they had started to trial at their department (a large university teaching hospital in central London).

    Upon trying the belt I got instant relief from the pinching misery of sciatica. No electric shocks down to my knee. No more stabbing buttock pain. I like how it can be applied so easily and without struggling compared to my husband's large elastic velcro application. No pulling or stretching. I liked how it could be worn at night. It really got me some much-needed pain-free sleep! I also noticed that my son's local rugby and soccer club have one in their first aid kit. I am very happy with my purchase. It DID work for me.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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    • May 23, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Thank you so much for taking the time to share the story of your relief Claudia! We are so glad that you are finally getting the pain relief you need!


  • 10 out 11 people found this review helpful

    DO NOT DO IT!

    • New Jersey,
    • May 1, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Please do not order this thing! Does not work. Paid $84.98 and was told that I had to pay return shipping...I paid return shipping for the belt to be returned one week later. I received a refund of $49.99! When I called to ask why my full refund was not given I was told there were two charges not refundable - one for $19.99 for them to send it out to me and $15.00 because I was making installment payments!

    RIP OFF do NOT do it. Money making scam! Contacting the Better Business Bureau after finished with this review.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • May 2, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Hi Richard, thank you for bringing this experience to our attention. You are correct that you should have been refunded the $15.00 setup fee and I do apologize for the confusion.

      As our return policy states, we provide a full refund of the purchase price, less the price of shipping.

      If you could kindly email kathe@drhonow.com with your full name, order number and contact information, we can pull up your order in the system and refund your difference. We will also be able to advise the Customer Care representative that they should have refunded your installment setup fee. I look forward to hearing from you.


  • 14 out 15 people found this review helpful

    Unsatisfied customer

    • Florida,
    • Apr 8, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I purchase one of Dr. Ho Belt and I also received one as a gift, so I decided that I didn't need two. So I decided to send the belt back that I purchase because it was never used and I have been given the runaround. I have left messages with the customer service voicemail because their phone message states to leave a message and they will get with me. No one has ever called me back. They advertise that if you are not satisfied with their product you can get and receive a refund when you return the belt. Well, my 90 days are up for a refund and no one is helping me. I wish that I never purchased this belt because it has been nothing but a headache.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Apr 9, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Hi Natasha, I'm sorry to hear you had issues getting in touch with our company. Our customer care team can be reached at 1-877-374-6669.

      I looked up your file and see that it has been noted that you are returning your belt for a refund. I'm glad to see that we finally connected and that you are able to return your belt.


  • 19 out 19 people found this review helpful

    Made my back worse

    • Springfield, MA,
    • Mar 31, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    This belt actually made my back worse. Wore it one day for 10 hours driving and I have new pains I didn't have before. Feels like I pulled my back out all over again. I suppose it's possible that I overinflated it, but isn't that supposed to be the way it is?

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Apr 5, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Hi Craig, we would be happy to speak with you to help troubleshoot how to best use the belt for your back pain. We do not recommend wearing it inflated for more than 1 hour. In addition, we could assist with the best option for inflation for you. Please reach out at 1-877-374-6669.


  • 32 out 33 people found this review helpful

    Would not recommend

    • North Carolina,
    • Mar 22, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I WOULD NOT recommend this device!

    I had one of these after my operations, lack of a better word, it’s a joke! It does not work like they claim, very uncomfortable. It leaks down, and did I mention VERY UNCOMFORTABLE?

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Apr 5, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Hi Kev, we are sorry to hear you had issues with your belt. Decompression technology is meant to help stretch and support your back. In our instructions, we suggest only wearing it inflated for no more than an hour. The rest of the time it can be worn as a regular support belt. If you need help troubleshooting how to use the belt, please contact our Customer Care team at 1-877-374-6669.


  • 56 out 61 people found this review helpful

    Not for use if got arthritis

    • New York,
    • Mar 8, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    Really Dr. Ho? Best technology you can come up with is a pump? Did you steal that idea from your kid's bicycle? So anyone who has arthritis in the hand, wrist or arm joint pains, cannot use your product, which in turn is the majority of the older population...40+ and up!

    If that's your best idea for a back pain reliever belt, then you're no real doctor. Get back to the drawing board, and put a bit more thought into the technology into your product.

    BTW, your products are way overpriced. Which could only mean you're a greedy scammer.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 14, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Hello Lady Love. Decompression technology has been used by professionals for many years to help with back issues. Many people who suffer from arthritis in joints like the wrist or hands prefer to use our Pain Therapy Systems. The combination of TENS and EMS help to reduce swelling and alleviate pain and tension.


  • 32 out 39 people found this review helpful

    Works for me!

    • Kearney, MO,
    • Mar 1, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    As a long-time sufferer of osteoarthritic pain, I have tried a lot of things to relieve the pain. I have tried pain-relieving drugs. They DO work, but there are side-effects. I have tried regular chiropractic care, and that helps A LOT.

    Then I found Dr. Ho's 2-in-1 Back Relief Belt. WOW! I felt a little relief after the first time I inflated the belt, by my experience is after I got used to it, it worked better and better each time. I supplement my use of the belt with regular chiropractic care.

    I have been diagnosed with severe degenerative osteoarthritis, so Medicare now covers most of what I try for pain relief. My chiropractor accepts Medicare Assignment, accepting what Medicare pays him as full payment. Medicare paid the cost of this belt, so there was NOTHING out of pocket. I found the claims about this belt to be ABSOLUTELY TRUE.

    My results were NOT miraculous, but after the 3rd and the 4th and the 5th treatment using the belt, I have less trouble getting around. I know the results are not imagined, because my chiropractor has noticed an improvement. Like he said, I had nothing to lose by TRYING the belt. So I tried it, and now my chiropractic adjustments take less than 20 minutes!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 5, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Hi Tommy, we are happy to hear that you are getting the relief you need to help you get around!


  • 29 out 32 people found this review helpful

    It helps me

    • Green Bay, WI,
    • Feb 21, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    I was skeptical, but when you are in tears and falling due to a lower back condition, what the heck. The belt has helped me tremendously. I am 71 years old, and have a couple of part-time jobs that I am confident I can now do. You have to do it daily and do some of the exercises too, but it works for me.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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    • Feb 22, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Thank you Lawrence! We are glad that we have given the ability to do those jobs now!


  • 40 out 48 people found this review helpful

    Terrible service

    • Venice, FL,
    • Feb 19, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    After calling them and getting set up, I received a call from Victor yesterday (2/8) stating my doctor did not give the ok for the belt. This is 5 weeks after I did all the paperwork with them.

    I called my doctor's office the day they told me to do so telling them to look out for a fax for my doctor to approve. Once again this was 5 weeks ago, and they said no problem, so why Dr. Ho’s office waited so long to get back to me is unknown.

    There is no way my family doctor would have turned the belt request down without calling me first. All I can say is the service is not very good.

    I was okayed by Dr. Ho’s office that my health insurance would cover the belt purchase early January.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 14, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Our 2-in-1 Back Relief Belt is a Medicare covered product. Since DR-HO'S is not set up to bill Medicare plans,we would refer you to an insurance specialist of an affiliated brace company that can work with you to get coverage for the belt. To reach the insurance specialists about all Medicare coverage inquiries, please call 1-855-483-6964.


  • 27 out 32 people found this review helpful

    On the fence

    • Atlanta, GA,
    • Feb 15, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    The very first time I used the belt I wore it upside down (the inflation tube positioned on the bottom of the belt on my right). IT HURT! I had to remove it within 2-3 minutes. The next day, I decided to try it again. I actually read the directions and positioned it correctly (with the inflation tube positioned on the top of the belt, my left side). It worked great while I was wearing it but as soon as I took it off the pain returned immediately. Obviously not able to wear it 24/7, but when it is used and used correctly it works!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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    • Mar 14, 2019

      Company Response from DR-HO'S

      Thanks Melody! We are glad to hear that it works when you wear it. Over time I hope your pain is reduced!


  • 78 out 85 people found this review helpful

    Scam, beware!

    • Albany, NY,
    • Feb 11, 2019
    • Verified Reviewer

    They take your Medicare insurance information then tell you that you're approved for the belt. Then they tell you that you're going to have to talk to another doctor in their network who will contact you at a later date. Keeping in mind they already have your Medicare number, and your personal contact information attached to the number! Even your place of residence...don't do it! PLEASE. I'm contacting BBB...

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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