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D.O.s & OMT

What is a D.O.?

Did you know that Dr. Taylor isn't an M.D. Instead, she chose to receive a Doctor of Osteopathy (D.O.) degree.

D.O.s are licensed physicians who have completed four years of medical education and then may train in their specialty of choice.

How are D.O.s different?

Emphasis on these principles is distinctive in osteopathic medical education:

Dr. Taylor embraces the holistic approach to medical care, treating the whole person, not just their symptoms. Also important is taking into account a person's lifestyle and environment which can significantly impact their health and well-being. Furthermore, educating patients about health promotion is just as important as teaching them about their medical conditions and disease states.

Physical barriers or dysfunction in the body impair proper flow of nutrients, wastes, and nerve conduction. Another distinct difference with D.O.s is their extensive training in using their hands as a tool in detecting these areas of dysfunction in the body.

Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) is the hands-on treatment component, used to restore the body’s structure and therefore enhance its function. OMT consists of a variety of techniques which are non-invasive and are part of a comprehensive therapeutic plan.

How is OMT performed?

At the initial visit, Dr. Taylor first obtains an extended medical history.

As part of the physical examination, a structural exam will be conducted to assess for dysfunction (i.e. tenderness or restricted motion and abnormal changes in the muscles, joints, soft tissue, etc.)

When Dr. Taylor determines that OMT is appropriate, she utilizes her hands to apply specific corrective forces ranging from very light touch to more increased pressure directed at affected areas of the body. At any time, the patient can tell Dr. Taylor to stop or alter treatment.

As in most forms of medical treatment, no specific results can be guaranteed. More than one treatment may be required, depending on the complexity or severity of conditions.

Other recommendations may be given to resolve the dysfunction, such as nutritional and mobility regimens.

What are the risks of OMT?

Patients rarely experience side effects as osteopathic manual medicine is considered one of the safest and most non-invasive forms of medical treatment. Most side effects occur from forceful techniques in manipulation.

The following side effects have been reported from all forms of manual medicine, including techniques other than OMT:

          Temporarily: soreness after treatment

          Occasionally: strains and sprains of the muscles, ligaments, and other soft tissues

          Rarely: rib fractures; disc injuries following manipulation of neck or lower back

          Extremely rarely: injury to a vertebral artery following neck manipulation, leading                     to stroke, sometimes with neurological impairment, other serious injury or death

What is the difference between OMT and other forms of manipulation?

Whereas other forms of manipulation focus on spinal misalignment, OMT involves soft tissues, fascia, muscles, joints, and also their surrounding blood and lymphatic flow and nervous system.

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