Osteopathic Principles & Philosophy

Osteopathic Principles and Practice (OPP) refers to a philosophical and practical approach to patient management and treatment, including osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT). OPP defines the conceptual understanding and practical application of the distinct behavioral, philosophical, and procedural aspects of clinical practice related to the four tenets of osteopathic medicine:

  • The body is a unit; the person is a unit of the body, mind and spirit;
  • The body is capable of self-regulation, self-healing and health maintenance;
  • Structure and function are reciprocally interrelated; and
  • Rational treatment is based upon an understanding of the basic principles of body unity, self-regulation, and the interrelationship of structure and function.

Faculty members assist the Director of Osteopathic Education in a variety of roles and to varying degrees to ensure the success of the designated osteopathic residents, inclusive of the requisite education in OPP and training necessary to develop and apply OMT.

Both M.D. and D.O. residents will be exposed to OPP curriculum and treatment, and all will be encouraged to integrate this within their clinical practice. The residency curriculum will encourage D.O. residents to:

  • demonstrate understanding and application of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) by appropriate application of multiple methods of treatment, including but not limited to, High Velocity/Low Amplitude (HVLA), strain/counter strain, and muscle energy techniques.
  • demonstrate, as documented in the medical record, integration of osteopathic concepts and OMT in patient care including the continuity of care training site, the hospital, and long term care facility. It is understood that integration implies the use of OMT in such conditions as, (but not limited to) respiratory, cardiac, and gastrointestinal disorders, as well as musculoskeletal disorders.
  • understand the philosophy behind osteopathic concepts and integration into clinical and patient care activities.
  • describe the role of the musculoskeletal system in disease, including somato/visceral reflexes, alterations in body framework, and trauma.
  • understand the indications and contraindications to osteopathic manipulative treatment.