In taking the case history, the osteopath will ask detailed questions about your particular complaint as well as questions about your current health, medical history and general lifestyle.
This enables the osteopath to build-up an overall picture of what may be causing your symptoms, not just focussing on the area of concern so the more you are able to tell the osteopath at this stage, the easier it will be for them to build up picture of what is causing your symptoms.
If required, a physical examination will be performed to assess your posture, mobility, etc. in order to identify any areas of strain, weakness or injury.
As well as observing you through a simple series of movements, the osteopath will also use their highly developed sense of touch to assess the quality and health of the underlying tissues.
Although not always necessary, the osteopath may also need to perform other, non-invasive, medical tests such as neurological examinations, the taking of blood pressure or perhaps listening to your chest with a stethoscope.
In order to perform the most effective physical examination possible it may be requested (although not required) that you remove some items of clothing.
NB – It is extremely important that patients feel comfortable at all times therefore we advise that you bring with you appropriate clothing to wear during treatment; something you feel comfortable in – a pair of shorts and a vest top for example. You will have the opportunity to change into these clothes privately before treatment.
If patients would like a third party to accompany them in the treatment room then they are welcome to invite a friend or relative to act as a chaperone. If patients would like a chaperone but are unable to provide their own then the clinic will be able to arrange for a chaperone to accompany patients in the clinic room if prior notice is given.
Once the osteopath has collated all of the information from the case history and physical examinations, he/she will discuss with you the diagnosis and consequent proposed management plan.
We believe that patient management is a two-way process and the osteopath will answer any questions you may have to ensure you understand and agree with what is being proposed prior to treatment.
Although it is always difficult to say exactly how many treatments you will require, most short-lived problems tend to be resolved within 2-5 visits.
The more long-standing a condition, the longer it tends to take to treat, therefore it is advisable to book in to see your osteopath as soon as you can when you start experiencing symptoms.
As osteopaths, we don’t like to sign patients up for a ‘course of treatments’ at the outset as every patient is different and will have different time-spans for healing.
For longer-term management of patients with more chronic conditions, the osteopath may recommend regular ‘maintenance’ treatments (maybe every 3-4 months) in order to stay on top of things and reduce the chances of the re-occurrence of an acute episode.