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Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment

Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment

Osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) is the therapeutic application 
of manually guided forces by an osteopathic physician (U.S. usage) to 
improve physiologic function and/or support homeostasis that has been 
altered by somatic dysfunction.[18] Somatic dysfunction is defined as 
impaired or altered function of related components of the somatic (body 
framework) system: skeletal, arthrodial and myofascial structures and 
their related vascular, lymphatic and neural elements. Acute somatic 
dysfunction is an immediate or short-term impairment or altered function 
of related components of the somatic(body) framework. It is 
characterized in early stages by vasodilation, edema, tenderness, pain 
and tissue contraction. It is diagnosed by history and palpatory 
assessment of tenderness, asymmetry of motion and relative position, 
restriction of motion and tissue texture change.[19] Chronic somatic 
dysfunction is the impairment or altered function of related components 
of the somatic (body framework) system. It may be characterized by 
tenderness, itching, fibrosis, paresthesias and tissue contraction.[19]
While there are many treatment techniques, OMT methods utilized may 
broadly be classified as active or passive and direct or indirect in nature.
Active Method: A technique in which the person voluntarily performs 
an osteopathic practitioner-directed motion.[18]
Passive Method: Based on techniques in which the patient refrains from 
voluntary muscle contraction.[20]
Direct Method (D/DIR): An osteopathic treatment strategy by which 
the restrictive barrier is engaged and a final activating force is applied 
to correct somatic dysfunction.[21]
Indirect Method (I/IND): A manipulative technique where the restrictive 
barrier is disengaged and the dysfunctional body part is moved away 
from the restrictive barrier until tissue tension is equal in one or all 
planes and directions.

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