The goal of osteopathic manipulative medicine, or OMM, is the resolution of what osteopaths call somatic dysfunction (the impaired or altered function of the musculo-skeletal system) in an attempt to aid the body’s own recuperative facilities. Osteopathic manual treatment of the musculoskeletal system employs a diverse array of techniques. These are normally employed together with dietary, postural, exercise and occupational advice, as well as counseling, in an attempt to help patients recover from illness and injury and in an attempt to minimise or manage pain and disease.
Osteopathic treatment employs manual approaches, alongside exercise and other rehabilitative techniques, for the treatment of many neuromusculoskeletal pain syndromes, such as:
- Back, neck and shoulder pain
- Nerve problems like sciatica
- Headache and migraine
- Muscle strains and spasms
- Hip, knee, jaw, elbow, wrist and ankle pain
- Joint injuries and arthritis
- Sports-related injuries like tendonitis (tennis elbow), bursitis and ligament sprains
- Work-related and repetitive strain injuries (RSI)
- Postural and mobility problems
Many osteopaths also manage (or co-manage) organic or Type-O conditions, such as asthma and pulmonary infection, menstrual pain and GIT disturbance.