What relevance does human osteopathic medical philosophy have for veterinarians who practice scientific integrative medicine? Plenty. The four principles, outlined below, that every osteopathic medical student learns early in their education, undergird our approach to patients and the treatments we prescribe. They also highlight a key difference between doctors of osteopathy (DOs) and medical doctors (MDs), i.e., that good health means more than just the absence of pain or disease.
The body is a unit; the person is a unit of body, mind, and spirit. This tenet reminds us of the interdependence, not independence, of the various systems and networks that subserve life and health.
The body is capable of self-regulation, self-healing, and health maintenance. In contrast to the disease-focused allopathic medical model, osteopathic philosophy sees health as the body's natural state, geared to restore and maintain homeostasis through multiple and interdependent self-regulatory mechanisms.
Structure and function are reciprocally interrelated. Structure governs function, and function impacts structure. Alter either one and changes occur in the other. Caught in time, they can turn around. Left unattended, they persist and tend to worsen.
Rational treatment is based upon an understanding of the basic principles of body unity, self-regulation, and the interrelationship of structure and function. Treating patients with science-based techniques such as medical acupuncture, medical massage, photomedicine, and patient-focused rehabilitation amplifies patient resilience, well-being, and the ability to resume an active and pain-free life.
At CuraCore VET, these four tenets infuse our curriculum. First and foremost, we educate our learners how to develop into better diagnosticians, not by ordering more tests but by returning to the basics, such as a thorough history and physical examination. We watch our patients moving and at rest, changing positions, and engaging with family members. We include myofascial palpation with every patient encounter. Laboratory tests and imaging cannot replace what direct contact and informed touch tell us.
Join us at one of our many osteopathically inspired, scientifically based integrative medicine and rehabilitation courses
and learn to be a better doctor, listener, and practitioner.