Osteopathy is a long established system of diagnosis and treatment designed to identify the causes of pain and dysfunction within the musculoskeletal system and related areas. By finding areas of dysfunction and injury within the muscles, ligaments, joints and soft tissues we can then improve upon these and help our patients recover their full potential.
We use traditional osteopathic assessments in combination with some medical tests (e.g. blood pressure measurements, arm and leg reflexes etc) to diagnose the cause of the condition and more importantly, the reasons why it arose in the first instance. These may relate to past injuries, working practices, bad posture, sports or wear and tear to name a few.
What to expect during your appointment
When seeing a patient for the first time we start by taking a thorough case history covering not only their current problem but any past episodes, injuries or accidents. We also need a good understanding of your general health (including any medications) in order to assess any impact they may have.
The next stage is to examine and assess the patient while they are going through a range of simple movements. This is followed by a gentle hands on assessment of the muscles and joints while they are resting either sitting or laying.
As with most physical examinations you will normally need to remove some clothing so that we can clearly see not only the area involved but also the surrounding joints etc. This allows us to see how well different parts are working together or if problems are being passed from one section to another. Please tell your Osteopath if you are uncomfortable with any of this and adaptations can usually be made. You are always welcome to bring a friend or relative along with you for your appointment.
Once the examination is finished we will have a clear diagnosis and can then put together a treatment and management plan. We would also have a good idea on how many treatments you will approximately need and your expected response rate.
Hands on treatment may involve soft tissue massage, gentle joint stretching and traction, joint manipulation and articulation. We are particularly keen to give our patients every opportunity to help themselves so exercises to do at home or work and advice on posture and lifestyle can often be very useful.
After treatment some patients experience a degree of soreness for 24-48hrs. this can be helped by using a cold pack which we will advise you on at the time. We are only ever a phone call away if you have any concerns following a treatment session.
It may take more than one treatment session before your symptoms improve. All of these aspects are very individual and we prefer to give you specific advice on a one to one basis.
If we do not think that we can help we will tell you and advise you on who best to see e.g. possibly your GP or another healthcare practitioner. If it is appropriate we can refer you for further investigations such as X-rays or MRI scans on a private basis.