Osteopathy is a form of holistic medical treatment, which is based on the idea that health is closely related to the structure of the body. They specialize in a treatment called manipulative therapy in which they use their hands to move parts of the patient's body, especially the muscles and bones, into the proper positions. This therapy continues until the patient's body systems are brought back to their correct relationship. Osteopathic physicians use the same methods that medical doctors use to diagnose and treat illness and injury. They prescribe medicines, perform surgery, and recommend diets and other kinds of therapy. More than forty-five percent of all osteopathic physicians are general practitioners or family doctors. As with medical doctors, osteopaths have office practices and work in hospitals. About fifteen percent of all osteopathic physicians are specialists in such fields as surgery, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, psychiatry, neurology, and internal medicine. A small number of osteopathic physicians have salaried positions in osteopathic hospitals and colleges, private industry, and government agencies.
In order to be an osteopath you are re
quired to go through extensive training. Osteopathic medical education requires 4 years of fulltime, comprehensive, and complete medical education. Once graduated and having attained the D.O. degree (Doctor of Osteopathy) prior to being eligible to practice, the osteopathic physician must complete a further 2 to 5 years of fulltime residency training in the specialty of their choosing such as internal medicine and subspecialties, surgery and subspecialties, orthopedics, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, emergency medicine, psychiatry, dermatology, pathology, family medicine, or musculoskeletal medicine (manual therapy osteopathy). There are 18 certifying boards with 85 specialties and subspecialties. Upon completion of residency training, specialty certification examinations are required. Even...
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