It’s a complete healthcare system. Its philosophy is to treat the whole individual, not just the symptoms. It emphasizes the interrelationships of structure and function, and the body’s inherent ability to heal itself. In this way, osteopathy is based on looking for the why of a problem and not just treating what bothers or hurts you.
The osteopath does the work through the hands, combining various techniques, having as the main objective to personalize and individualize the treatment to apply it to the patient in the best possible way considering the psychological and emotional state of the patient. Through knowledge acquired in anatomy and physiology, the osteopath tries to ‘help’ and activate the intricate ability that the body possesses in order to bring forth healing.
The body that regulates osteopathy in the United Kingdom is the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC). It was founded on May 9, 1998. The title “Osteopath” has been protected since May 9, 2000. All osteopaths in the UK must be registered with GOsC. Only professionals who have proven to be competent and conﬁdent are the ones you are allowed to register with GOsC. All osteopaths are required to be insured and follow very professional behavior.
In the ﬁrst consultation, a complete history of the patient is made (make a rigorous previous examination of all their surgical, clinical and traumatic history, in addition to considering the psychosocial aspect in which the patient operates). Knowing the surgical, clinical, and traumatic history is of utmost importance since I need to make sure that the ailment that the patient presents in my consultation is musculoskeletal (skeletal muscle) in nature and not from any organ, which would need to refer the patient to his family doctor immediately. Once sure that the ailment is musculoskeletal in nature, it is when I will perform the physical examination with the aim of ﬁnding areas of restriction or lack of mobility in the patient’s body. Through this exploration, the osteopath tries to make an assessment and improve the symptomatology of the individual working in the less mobile areas.
In the ﬁrst consultation, you may need the patient to undress, and stay in his/her underwear. In this way, I can see the entire spine. It is important to be able to have as much information as possible so that the diagnosis is as accurate as possible. If this situation can create discomfort, it is advisable to bring shorts or sportswear.
It depends on how complex the nature of the problem is. As a rule, recent (acute) discomfort can be resolved quite quickly: from 1 to 3 treatments. Discomfort lasting months or years (chronic problems) takes longer. We will discuss this in the ﬁrst consultation. What you can be sure of, is that I will not give you more treatments than necessary.