Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine

Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine or OMT

What is it? It’s a hands-on physical manipulation of the musculoskeletal system.

It was started by Dr. Andrew Still in 1874 and is taught in all osteopathic medical schools. OMT helps the alignment and movement of the body and supports self-healing.

Some of the manipulation techniques used in OMT are High Velocity Low Amplitude (HVLA), Muscle Energy, Counter-strain and Myofascial Release. HVLA is used to restore joint motion. Muscle energy is a direct treatment where the patient contracts muscles against resistance to help stretch and restore alignment in the body. Counter-strain involves finding tender points and then passively manipulating until the tenderness decreases, and myofascial release focuses on releasing the fascia surrounding all muscles to allow greater movement.

OMT can help with many kinds of pain including neck, back, shoulder, tendonitis, fibromyalgia, headaches and arthritis. It can help the body release, relax and breathe more effectively. How is it different than chiropractic? Some manipulative skills are similar howerever D.O.s and M.D.s who do OMT have more medical training and can also prescribe medications when needed.