Osteopathic Medicine is a distinct American branch of evidence-based, mainstream medicine that stresses promoting health as much as reacting to disease.
Doctors of Osteopathic (D.O.) medicine are physicians and surgeons who know that health is interconnected with all aspects of a person’s life and are trained to see patient care as a synthesis of deep knowledge of functional anatomy with consideration of a patient in their particular context. D.O.s have a full range of medical treatment options, including surgery, prescribing drugs, and manual medicine. By considering the big picture, treatment goals aim to support a patient’s overall health as well as address acute symptoms.
Osteopathic medical schools’ curricula differ from schools that train Doctors of Medicine (M.D.) in that D.O.’s receive specialized training in the musculoskeletal system and treatment. Since D.O.s are trained to see the body as an integrated unit of systems that work together to heal and maintain health, they believe that the whole body’s structure should be optimized to facilitate its ability to self-regulate.