Osteopathy is a patient-centred system of healthcare

Advice from the General Osteopathic Council:

Osteopathy is a patient-centred system of healthcare. A first appointment generally lasts longer than subsequent appointment, to allow the osteopath adequate time to:

Listen and ask questions about your problem, your general health, other medical care you are receiving or medication you are taking, and record this in your case notes. The information you provide will be confidential

Examine you: You may be asked to undress briefly down to your underwear – to palpate the problem area. Tell your osteopath if you are uncomfortable with this. Blankets and robes are available to ensure your privacy. You can ask a friend or relative to accompany you during your treatment

Ask you to make simple movements and stretches, to observe your posture and mobility. Because of the body’s structure, pain or stiffness you are experiencing in one area may be linked to a problem elsewhere

Examine the health of the joints, tissues, and ligaments using their hands and a highly developed sense of touch called palpitation

Check for signs of other serious conditions they cannot treat and advise you to see your GP or go to hospital. They should provide you with a letter explaining what they believe to be the problem.