Dr. Natasha Withers: We address them as doctor, but osteopathic physicians have a different set of initials, DO instead of MD after their names. Learn how different and similar these two kinds of doctors are.
Osteopathy was founded by a physician surgeon who served in the civil war. He thought that treatments being used were ineffective and sometimes harmful. After the war he spent 30 years studying the human body and founded osteopathy based on his discoveries. In 1892 he opened the first school of osteopathy.
Osteopathy holds that the structure and the internal functioning of the body are interrelated and that the body has an innate ability to heal itself. Many DOs practice osteopathic manipulative treatment, hands-on techniques designed to reduce pain and improved function of both the structure and the organs of the body.
There are 63,000 licensed osteopathic physicians who practice the entire scope of modern medicine. More than 20% of current US medical students are training to be DOs. You're likely to find DOs like me working alongside MDs in group practices.
I'm Dr. Natasha. Live well!