such decisions

Discussion in 'Medical Students - DO' started by lee03, Mar 22, 2001.

  1. lee03

    lee03 New Member

    Mar 21, 2001
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    i'm a second year undergrad student at umaine. i've been looking into d.o. schools because i like the osteopath philosophy. a d.o. came to speek with our health professions club a couple weeks ago, and she said something about how osteopathic medicine is based mostly on theories. people
    aren't sure why the manipulation works, it just does. i tend to believe only in things that can be scientifically proven. will my beliefs and the osteopathic beliefs clash when i get to d.o. school? and also, is anyone currently attending western university? if so, any info you could provide would be greatly appreciated. thanks!!
  2. Dr JPH

    Dr JPH Membership Revoked
    Removed 10+ Year Member

    Feb 4, 2000
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    Resident [Any Field]
    My understanding has always been that manipulation works because it has a physiological basis.

    It may be possible that all of the positive effects are not fully understood, but I am pretty sure that the basis of why manipulation works is pretty well mapped-out.

    I am only a pre-med, so maybe Osteopathic students could shed some more light on this topic. But, I don't think that manipulation is done "just because".


    Joshua Paul Hazelton
    [email protected]
    University of the Sciences in Philadelphia (2002)
  3. William Bohannon

    10+ Year Member

    Jan 24, 2001
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    Hello All,

    I'm a third year DO student, so don't think I'm an expert. In reply to your question about the scientific proof. The facts as I know them are as follows. The problem is there is so little large scale research published. This occurs for several reasons.

    First, there are numerous articles with a very small patient population cited. But, the DO profession has been very slow to design and perform large scale, multi-institution clinical trials. Most of the DO schools stress primary care and not academic medicine.

    Second, actually performing a double blind study with manipulation is impossible. The practioners will definitely know which patients are receiving true manipulative therapy.

    Third, there is a difficulty defining endpoints and selecting patients for a study. The latest large scale study that came out (I think) was a few years ago. It compared Manipulation (high velocity low amplitude techniques)to more standard medical management of low back pain. The study concluded that Manipulation was as effective as standard treatments and was cheaper. Well, that sounds great. But, it is also a generally accepted fact better than 90% of low back pain will get better in a month or so no matter what you do.

    Fourth, how do you measure the actual effect? There are several techniques that are supposed to improve the flow of lymph fluid thus improving the immune function (in theory). The problem is how to measure the flow of lymph fluid. There isn't a radioactive marker or tag that is just taken up by lymph fluid (as far as I know). So, you do the technique and the patient feels better. Did they feel better because of improved lymph fluid circulation or because of close human touch and contact? Did they actually increase their immune function or just "feel Better"? Again, the jury is still out on that one too.

    On the other hand, numerous patients claim to feel better after receiving Osteopathic Manipulation. So, can anecdotal reports from physicans and patients take the place of controlled scientific study? The jury is still out on that one.

    Personally, my neck is feeling a little stiff and I would really appreciate being near a classmate of mine so they could crack it for me.

    Truth is, no one has a definate answer. But then, there are so very few definate answers to many questions in medicine.

    This wasn't much of an answer, but at least I voiced my opinion.

  4. Billie

    Billie An Oldie but a Goodie...
    10+ Year Member

    Nov 30, 1998
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    Be quiet and get back to your NUTS!

    your classmate


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