Our Oxford Osteopaths specialize in chronic back pain, leg, neck & shoulder pain, sport related injuries and more.  We are the experts in pain relief for all musculoskeletal problems from trapped nerves and headaches, to Arthritis, rheumatic pain and more.. Book an appointment online with our Osteopath today..
Oxford Osteopathy & Sports Injury Clinic - FAQ
Frequently Asked Questions:


What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is an established and recognised system of diagnosis and treatment that lays its emphasis on the structural integrity of the body. This is supported by practical lifestyle advice to enable patients to maintain optimum physical health. It is distinct because it recognises that much of the pain and disability we suffer stems from abnormalities and weaknesses in the structure of the body as well as damage caused to it by disease. Osteopathy uses many of the diagnostic procedures used in conventional medical assessment and diagnosis. It's main strength, however, lies in the unique way the patient is assessed from a mechanical, functional and postural standpoint and the manual methods of treatment applied to suit the needs of the individual.

Osteopathy is a flourishing healthcare profession in the UK, with around 30,000 people currently consulting osteopaths every working day. This equates to approximately seven and a quarter million consultations per year.

Osteopaths use a wide variety of approaches to treatment and can bring relief or improvement to many painful conditions affecting, for example, children, the elderly, sportsmen and women, or to problems which arise during or after pregnancy.
Is my Osteopath trained?
Registered Osteopaths are currently required to undertake a four or five-year honours degree programme, underpinned by thorough clinical training. This is undertaken at a General Osteopathic Council (GOsC) recognised University or School of Osteopathy. The GOsC regulates, promotes and develops the profession of osteopathy, maintaining a statutory register of those entitled to practise osteopathy. Only practitioners meeting GOsC’s high standards of safety and competency are eligible to join this register. Proof of good health, good character and professional indemnity insurance cover is also required. It is a criminal offence, liable to prosecution, to describe oneself as an osteopath in the UK unless registered with the GOsC.

Once registered, Osteopaths are committed to lifelong learning through a system of mandatory Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
What can Osteopathy treat?
Osteopathy has earned widespread respect as a treatment for back pain. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)* advises in its September 2008 consultation paper that manual therapy including manipulation, acupuncture and a structured exercise program tailored to the individual should be considered in the management of patients with chronic (longer than six weeks duration) non-specific low back pain. In the United Kingdom back pain exercise and manipulation (UK BEAM)** randomised trial that looked into the effectiveness of physical treatments for back pain in primary care it concluded that relative to "best care" in general practice, manipulation followed by exercise was one of the best courses of treatment.

Osteopathy can be effective in treating conditions such as: include back and neck pain; postural problems; sporting injuries; muscle and other soft tissue injuries; joint deterioration; restricted mobility; hip, knee and foot biomechanics; pregnancy pain; headaches and occupational ill-health. We focus on the diagnosis, management, treatment and prevention of musculoskeletal and other related disorders without the use of drugs or surgery unless absolutely necessary.

If you are in any doubt about whether Osteopathy is right for you or the problems that you are suffering please call and we will be more than happy to discuss it with you.

*NICE is an independent organisation responsible for providing national guidance on promoting good health and preventing and treating ill health http://www.nice.org.uk/

**United Kingdom back pain exercise and manipulation (UK BEAM) randomised trial: effectiveness of physical treatments for back pain in primary care BMJ 2004;329:1377 (11 December), doi:10.1136/bmj.38282.669225.AE (published 19 November 2004)
What is the history behind Osteopathy?
Osteopathy was founded in the latter half of the 19th century by a Doctor who served in the American Civil War named Andrew Taylor Still. Dr Still’s research and clinical observations led him to the understanding that the musculoskeletal system plays a fundamental role in both health and disease. He believed that through the use of manual techniques you could correct problems in the body's structure and thus improve it's ability to function and heal.

Dr Still promoted the idea of preventive medicine & inter-medical collaboration and endorsed the philosophy that physicians should focus on treating the whole patient rather than just the disease.
What should I expect from my visit to an Osteopath?
During the initial consultation the Osteopath will take a thorough medical case history including important information about your lifestyle and diet. You will normally be asked to undress to your underwear and will be asked to perform a series of simple movements which will allow your Osteopath to evaluate potential movement restrictions. This will allow for a diagnosis and treatment plan to be tailored to your individual needs and the degree of pain or discomfort that you are in.

If you do not feel comfortable undressing to your underwear we ask you to bring loose fitting clothes, ideally shorts and t-shirt to change into.

Osteopaths use their hands to identify abnormalities within the body’s structure and function. Treatment involves gentle, manual techniques – easing pain, reducing swelling and improving mobility. Often, this may involve manipulation which can result in an audible ‘click’ being heard and which is simply the sound of gas bubbles popping in the fluid of the joints. With added exercises and health advice, osteopaths help to reduce the symptoms and improve your health and quality of life.

Your osteopath should make you feel at ease and communicate what she or he is doing. Do ask questions at anytime during your consultation if you are unsure.

Our appointment times are 45 minutes for initial consultation with treatment and 30 minutes for subsequent appointments with treatment, though times may vary according to your individual needs.
Does Osteopathy hurt?
No, osteopathic treatment is not painful when performed by a qualified professional. If an acute muscle spasm is present over the area being treated or if the problem has existed for a long time, it is possible that you may feel some mild short-term discomfort after the treatment.

Your osteopath will be able to tell you if this is likely to happen and instruct you on how to minimise any discomfort.
How soon will I feel better?
This will depend on the individual problem, how long you've had it and also its severity. Your osteopath will be able to advise you on your likely recovery time.

In most cases you will feel a definite change for the better early in your treatment plan. Many patients express feeling 'better' or 'lighter' after just one or two treatments, but in general, the longer you've had the problem, the longer it will take to change. Your commitment to the recommended treatment plan, home exercises, if prescribed and any diet or lifestyle advise will also determine your treatment outcome and therefore the long term benefits from osteopathic care.
How often do I need to go?
The number of treatments you require depends on several factors such as your specific health complaint, how long you've had it, how severe it is, and how many areas and tissues are affected.

Your individual treatment needs will be determined during your initial consultation but many patients opt for 'maintenance care' once they feel better. Again, the frequency of your maintenance visits will depend on several factors but most patients come back anything from once a month to once every few months for a check-up. We can only advise on what is best for you. However long you decide to receive osteopathic care is always at your discretion.
Does my medical insurance cover me for Osteopathy?
The majority of medical insurance companies cover Osteopathy in their schemes. You may however, require a referral from your General Practitioner (GP). If you are in doubt about whether you are covered please contact your scheme provider directly. We are currently registered with the following health insurance providers and are happy to provide treatment for patients insured on their health plans:- AXA PPP, Norwich Union, Pru Health, Standard Life, SimplyHealth, WPA, HSA, Saga Health and Westfield.
Can sport performance be improved?
Yes, osteopathy works by improving the mechanics of joints, muscles and ligaments as well as normalising the integrity of the nervous system. When the nerves and muscles are working without interference, the body's functional potential is maximised. Many patients have found significant improvement in their sports performance through osteopathy.

If you've had a sports injury, your osteopath can help you recover quicker, with less pain and with minimal resultant dysfunction. More importantly, a trained osteopath can uncover underlying dysfunction, and by correcting it, stop your problem from recurring. Many sportsmen simply wish to maintain their good health and prevent any future problems with regular osteopathic treatments.
Can you give me some general back care advice?
1. For back pain, it is better to see your osteopath sooner rather than later.

2. Take regular exercise – your osteopath will discuss what’s right for you.

3. Many hours spent in one position can cause problems – avoid computer ‘hump’.

4. During repetitive tasks, vary your rhythm and take frequent breaks.

5. Adjust car seats and on long journeys, take regular breaks to stretch.

6. Pace yourself with heavy work such as gardening – don’t risk a disc!

7. Watch children’s posture – they shouldn’t carry bags on one shoulder or spend too long at a computer without breaks.

8. During pregnancy, osteopathy can help your body adjust to changes.

9. Avoid strain when lifting, particularly small children and shopping.
Are there any potential problems I can look out for?
Years of training and experience plus sophisticated analysis techniques enable your osteopath to detect spinal problems – but there are simple things you can look out for to find out if you may have potential problems.

1. Your heels wear out unevenly. Can be due to uneven leg length or stress along the length of the spine.

2. You can’t take a satisfyingly deep breath. Breath, health, spinal health and energy are interrelated.

3. You have to “crack” your neck, back or other joints a lot. Can be caused by other joints in your spine not functioning properly.

5. You can’t twist and turn your head or hips to either side easily and equally giving you a reduced range of motion and potential overuse/strain injury.

6. Your foot flares out when walking. This test is easy as long as you don’t cheat. Merely look at your feet as you walk. Do they both point forward or does one foot appear to flare inward or outward – or do both? Foot flare may be a sign of a problem in the lower spine or hips and can lead to an overuse/strain injury.

7. One leg appears longer than the other. Keep your shoes on and lie down. Have someone stand behind you and look down at your feet and then gently push your heels towards your head. Compare where the heels meet the shoes. One foot may appear anywhere from ⅛” to 1” shorter than the other.

8. You have poor posture. Stand on two bathroom scales. The weight distribution should be about the same over each foot. If not, then that’s a good sign that your spine, hips or head are off-centre.

9. You have headaches, back aches, sore or tender spots in muscles or joints.
What happens if I am unable to get to the Clinic?
If you are too unwell to come to the clinic, please request a home visit by booking an appointment before 12 noon. After this time home visits for emergencies may have to wait until the next day.

Can you issue Accident Reports & Incapacity Certificates?
Yes, Osteopathy is uniquely placed to assess the patient from a mechanical, functional and postural standpoint giving an accurate analysis of any trauma sustained to the musculo-skeletal system.

Accident Reports

Accident reports include a full musculo-skeletal and biomechanical assessment of a patient's injuries including accident details, a full history post-trauma plus any treatment administered, present symptoms, past history where relevant, the effects of injury at work and at home and a complete examination of the patient with prognosis of how the patient will manage short and long term.

Incapacity Certificates (DSS)

We issue Incapacity Certificates (Department of Social Security), which will be treated by the Benefits Agency (Contributions) in the same way as a GP's certificate.


What is Acupuncture?
The term "acupuncture" describes a family of procedures involving the stimulation of anatomical points on the body using a variety of techniques. This involves penetrating the skin with very thin, solid, metallic needles that are manipulated by the hands of the practitioner. In the UK, acupuncture is a popular and well-established complementary therapy, with approximately three million people undergoing treatment each year.

All BMAS acupuncturists are fully qualified medical practitioners who have also undertaken additional training in medical acupuncture.
What conditions can Acupuncture treat?
Acupuncture is effective in a wide range of painful conditions and is commonly used to treat musculoskeletal pain; eg back, shoulder, neck and leg pain. It has been successfully used to treat headaches, migraines, trapped nerves, chronic muscle strains and various kinds of rheumatic and arthritic pain.

Some other situations in which acupuncture might be used would be:

- Functional bowel or bladder problems such as IBS or irritable bladder, and even mild forms of urinary incontinence

- Allergies such as hayfever, perennial allergic rhinitis, and some types of allergic rashes such as urticaria or prickly heat

- Various other skin problems such as discrete rashes and ulcers, pruritus (itching), and some forms of dermatitis

- Sinus problems and chronic catarrh

- Dry mouth and eyes

- Menstrual and menopausal symptoms.

- Stopping Smoking

This is by no means a complete list, there are many more conditions that can be successfully treated with acupuncture. If in doubt as to whether acupuncture can help you, please contact the Oxford clinic and we will be happy to advise.
What should I expect from my visit to an Acupuncturist?
During the initial consultation the practitioner will take a thorough medical case history. A course of suitable treatment will then be tailored the condition. Treatment is usually provided in six consecutive appointments but may be less if the condition responds quickly. If, however the practitioner feels that your condition can not be treated with acupuncture, you will be recommended to see your General Practitioner (GP) or appropriate specialist.
Does my medical insurance cover me for Acupuncture?
Some private health care providers such as BUPA, PPP and WPA pay for treatment under their health care policies. Usually they will only do this if the treatment is being provided by a BMAS member.

If you are in doubt about whether you are covered please contact your scheme provider directly.


How much does treatment cost?
Initial Consultation (including treatment)
45 mins duration

Follow up treatments
30 mins duration

Home visits
Up to 60 mins duration

Please contact us for latest prices.
How can I pay?
Unless you are covered by private medical insurance we require payment at the end of each session. Balances can be settled by either cash, cheque or most major credit cards.
What if I have to cancel my appointment?
Please give 24 hours notice if you are unable to attend your appointment as cancellation within this time may result in a £20 charge.
Oxford Osteopathy & Sports Injury Clinic - Oxford OSIC

Raleigh Park Clinic
45 Raleigh Park Road
Tel: 07743 366 377  
Oxford Clinic Opening Hours:
Monday - Friday   8.00am - 8.00pm
Saturday  9.00am - 1.00pm

Weybridge Osteopathy & Sports Injury Clinic (Currently Members Only)

St. George's Hill Lawn Tennis Club
St. George's Hill
KT13 0LL
Tel: 07808 921 380
©2007 Mangan & Burke - Oxford Osteopathy & Sports Injury Clinic - Oxfordshire OX2
www . osic-oxford . co . uk

Bookmark and Share