One of the more common questions our practice is asked is how the main treatment modality, osteopathic manipulative treatment, differs from other bodywork such as chiropractic, medical massage, etc.
While you will very likely receive hands-on treatment at our practice, the primary purpose of your visit is to have your musculoskeletal complaint evaluated and treated by a medical doctor who specializes in this system of the body. This is similar to seeing a nephrologist for a kidney problem or a cardiologist for a heart problem. Although non-physician bodyworkers, such as chiropractors and physical therapists, can provide relief for joint and muscle complaints, it is recommended that you have your condition diagnosed and followed by a physician.
Most bodyworkers rely primarily on a few techniques (e.g. thrusting for chiropractors, fascial work for massage, muscle work for physical therapy); however, osteopathic physicians are trained in a wide array of techniques to address all the aspects of the musculoskeletal system. These techniques range from joint manipulation and muscle work to myofascial release and craniosacral therapy. In addition, as physicians, we are licensed to use medications such as steroids and other injectables, muscle relaxants, etc. to amplify treatment.
Seeing an osteopathic musculoskeletal specialist has the benefit of having a physician evaluate, diagnose, follow your complaint, and provide treatment. Consider it like having a doctor, bodyworker, and physical therapist all in one, saving you time, visits to multiple providers, and cost.