The first consultation will take approximately one hour. A detailed and confidential case history will be taken in order to build up a picture of your health, work and home life. This covers areas such as previous injuries and operations, any medication that you have been prescribed and any stress, in order to help make a diagnosis.
The practitioner will leave the room while you undress to your underwear. If you are uncomfortable with this, it is not essential to completely undress and a chaperone can be present. Towels and gowns are available.
The osteopath will then analyse your posture and the range of movement of your joints as well as the condition of muscles, ligaments and connective tissue. The examination is also likely to involve taking your blood pressure and carrying out a number of neurological, orthopaedic, circulatory and other tests if necessary. This is important as a registered osteopath is trained to identify a wide range of conditions that might need other treatment or referral to your GP or specialist for diagnostic tests such as X-rays, blood tests or scans.
If he/she decides that osteopathic treatment would be safe and helpful they will then, with your permissions, ask you to sit or lie on the treatment table and using their hands, will start trying to correct the problems.
At the end of the treatment the osteopath will say whether or not he or she thinks you will need further treatment and is likely to offer advice on posture, ergonomics, food regime and lifestyle. Simple, corrective exercises are likely to be demonstrated.
Any follow-up treatments usually last half an hour.