Osteopathy is a natural medicine which aims to restore function in the body by treating the causes of pain and imbalance. All tissues of the body (whether bone, muscle, joints, organs, fluids, nerves, cranial bones, etc.) should have a subtle, continuous rhythm or motion. This motion can be comparable to an idling car. The car itself is stationary and motion is not visible, but there are many small, intricate parts under the hood that are in a constant state of motion. Over time, the mobility of these tissues are affected due to the aging process, posture, traumas, accidents, injuries, illness, surgical scarring, childbirth, pregnancies, repetitive activity, or even the cumulative effects of mental, emotional, physical and stress. The key to any successful therapy is to identify and understand the cause that is contributing to the symptoms experienced. Going back to the car analogy, if a car was showing uneven wear patterns on the tires, several areas must be examined such as the brakes, shocks, alignment, power steering fluid, drive chain, etc. The skilled mechanic must do more than simply change the tires! The same is true with the body. Although the symptoms may be experienced in the knee, the entire individual must be examined in order to identify significant restrictions to tissues that create imbalance and compensation leading to the knee pain. The Osteopathic Manual Practitioner relies on the quality and finesse of their subtle palpation in order to identify these tissue restrictions, and then works to improve the mobility to allow self-healing to occur.
We’ve all seen it on TV or in a movie. The scene is tense and the patient is doing poorly. The doctor calls out urgently. Retractor! Scalpel! Suction! Massage Table!