Osteopathy is a complete system of medicine offering a distinct, recognised therapy for all stages of life, from newborn through to the elderly. Osteopathic treatment can vary from osteopath to osteopath using a variety of techniques to restore function and health to all structures of the body. This may include dietary advice, exercise programmes or ergonomic advice related to your work environment.

A typical consultation

A typical consultation will begin with a detailed case history of the presenting complaint. Also the past medical history involving illness, operations, injuries, accidents and medication can often be relevant to current problems and may be discussed. The osteopath will examine the area assessing range and quality of movement, tissue texture changes, asymmetry of tissues and tenderness. The osteopath is also qualified to medically screen patients and may take your blood pressure, reflexes etc. Sometimes further tests may be required, e.g. x-rays or MRI scans. In these situations the osteopath may liaise with the patient’s GP or can privately refer directly to an x-ray department.


The osteopathic musculoskeletal examination provides information of other systems and the general health status of the patient. Supported by an in depth knowledge of functional anatomy and physiology enables the osteopath to diagnose safely and choose the right treatment to address the causes of the patients symptoms.

Osteopaths are regulated by a statutory register. The GOSC (General Osteopathic Council) and Osteopath is a protected title by law. All osteopaths have graduated with a degree in osteopathy and have passed an External Clinical Competence Assessment set by the GOSC. Osteopaths are required to maintain practice skills and knowledge with compulsory courses. Most osteopaths use CPD (Continuing Professional Development) to expand knowledge in areas of interests and can specialise in a chosen field ie paediatrics, obstetrics, naturopathy and sports medicine.


Caroline Clifford-Smith