Osteopathy was founded by Andrew Taylor Stills in 1874. Dr. Stills rejected the medical practices of his time after realizing that they often caused more harm then benefit. He believed that the body had an innate ability to heal itself. He believed in the recognition that lifestyle and community play a part in a persons well being. Patients who choose to seek out manual osteopaths generally do so for their non invasive, holistic approach to health care.
An osteopathic examination will vary from patient to patient and will depend greatly on their unique history.
An osteopathic examination will usually begin with general observations of the patient in static posture followed by the patient performing dynamic posture i.e. range of motion, mobility testing and gait patterns.
Once the manual osteopath has identified any asymmetries or abnormalities they can carry on to the palpatory examination.
In the palpatory examination the manual osteopath will observe any area that called attention to itself in the first part of the examination. Evaluating temperature, texture of the tissue from superficial layers to the deep layers.
Depending on the manual osteopath you are working with, as well as the issues you are seeking to remedy, they may perform palpation over the viscera as well.
Next the manual osteopath will check the tone of your muscles while having you in an assortment of different positions.
The final step in most examinations is to determine if there is an articular component to the patients complaint. This will involve small movements of joints to determine their functionality.
Once these steps are complete the manual osteopath will come up with a specific treatment plan for you. There is no one size fits all in this field.
This is a very brief overview of what may happen when you go to see a manual osteopath for the first time. Every manual osteopath has their own unique style.