The pedestrian, who was wearing just a pair of tartan boxer shorts, wandered onto the M8 just before 7am yesterday forcing cars to come to a halt.
A number of photographs posted on social media showed him climbing onto the bonnets of some vehicles and walking through lanes packed with traffic.
Eyewitnesses said that the man, who appeared to be in his late 30s or early 40s, seemed distressed and was shouting at some of the vehicles' occupants.
The bizarre incident happened as commuters made their way to work near to Harthill and Shotts.
Dozens of drivers caught up in the tailback called the police on their mobile phones.
Drivers faced delays of up to 30 minutes while officers attempted to reach the man and get him off the road as he darted between lanes both east and westbound.
The half-naked man jumped onto several car bonnets and weaved in between traffic before police ran after him and cornered him on the hard shoulder.
Traffic Scotland warned those starting their journey to work to watch out, tweeting: "Pedestrian. All lanes restricted for up to 30 minutes."
Eyewitness David Mckay's photo of the man was used in TV news bulletins after he posted a tweet which said: "Chaos on the m8 cos of this guy jumping on cars wearing only pants! Police all over the place now."
Speaking after the man was caught, he described officers apprehending the man and taking him off the road.
He said: "I arrived quite late, I think, as the police were running on foot down the road behind a van. He was wandering around shouting at the cars.
"The white car stopped and he was banging the window then walked round and climbed on the front. He was walking westbound.
"There were a bunch of police and cars stopped further up the eastbound side of the road.
"The police were running on the shoulder. He was in the middle of the two lanes and cars were trying to drive round him."
Fellow commuter Ryan Sclater said: "Respect to the man I saw on my way to work this morning running about the M8 in just his boxers!! Was causing havoc! "
Waqqas Ashraf said: "This is the reason for delays on the M8 this morning. Only in scotland eh."
A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: "A man has been detained and taken to hospital for treatment for a suspected head injury.
"The incident happened at 6.55am near to Junction 5 on the M8 eastbound close to Shotts."