What is Osteopathic Medicine?
Osteopathic medicine is a unique approach to patient care that blends the science and art of medicine. Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (listed as D.O.) are fully licensed to practice medicine and surgery but also have additional training in hands-on diagnosis and treatment of the musculoskeletal system. Founded in the late 1800’s by Dr. Andrew Taylor Still, the philosophy of osteopathic medicine focuses on identifying and treating the cause, not just the symptoms. Several key principles include:
- The body acts as a whole unit, not a sum of parts;
- Structure and function are interrelated;
- The body has an innate ability to heal itself.
Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine use a hands-on approach called Osteopathic Manipulation Treatment (OMT) to facilitate health and healing. These techniques are very gentle and typically involve using pressure and resistance to work with the muscles, connective tissues, and joints. OMT strives to restore motion, alleviate pain, and support the body’s structure to help it function more efficiently. Each patient is treated as an individual and treatment plans are made on a case-by-case basis.
OMT benefits patients of all ages. Some common conditions treated by OMT include (but are not limited to) headaches, back/neck pain, pregnancy issues, infant colic, constipation/reflux, torticollis (twisted neck), scoliosis, asthma, pelvic pain, and arthritis.
If you have questions or would like more information, please contact the Center for Health and Healing for further assistance at 608-392-5005.
Dr. Jackie Van Manen completed medical training at Des Moines (Iowa) University Osteopathic Medical Center, and family medicine training at the La Crosse-Mayo Family Medicine Residency program in La Crosse, WI. She completed specialty fellowship training in Neuromusculoskeletal/Osteopathic Medicine at Pikeville (Kentucky) Medical Center.