What is Orthopaedic Medicine?

Orthopaedic Medicine is not Orthopaedic Surgery.

You might say it is everything but. Orthopaedic Medicine encompasses virtually any therapeutic modality intended to help problems with the structural framework of the human body – the bones, soft tissue, and the joints. (“Soft Tissue”, while softer than bone, is nonetheless very strong. Soft tissue includes ligaments, tendons, muscles and fascia). Orthopaedic dysfunction accounts for the majority of pain complaints and disability, as well as other health problems. Orthopaedic Medicine involves medical management of such conditions by any and every means available, short of surgery. Certainly surgery when necessary, but not necessarily surgery, one might say.Orthopaedic Medicine covers a wide-ranging (and growing) array of diagnostic and therapeutic skills. Some are practiced by other health care practitioners, such as chiropractors, osteopaths, physiotherapists, massage therapists, and acupuncturists. Some can only be performed by an MD or DO. For example, there are many, many schools and techniques of manipulation. Chiropractic is perhaps the best known. However, Osteopathy, which originated over a hundred years ago, about the same time as chiropractic, also offers a comprehensive approach to manual medicine, yet is quite different in many ways. In the USA, where it originated, graduates are as fully qualified as MD’s, and in addition have training in Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment. In other countries, the emphasis is exclusively on the manual skills, and while they turn out highly skilled manipulators and healers, they do not have training nor accreditation as physicians.

The CAOM would like MD’s in our own country to have available to them the knowledge and skills to treat their patients with the techniques of manual medicine. While other practitioners do make a wonderful contribution to the healing arts, we feel a physician has the unique position – and responsibility – to fully utilize all the diagnostic and therapeutic tools available, including the vast resources of Western Medicine. Unless and until we are able to bring an understanding of manual medicine back into mainstream medicine, Western Medicine will sorely lack the comprehensiveness it asserts.

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Recent Articles

Suggested reading for mind-body connection and chronic pain

Recommended Reading The Divided Mind: The Epidemic of Mindbody Disorders John Sarno has written several books dealing with mind-body disorders and connections and come highly recommended. Found on Amazon Pain Free for Life: The 6-Week Cure for Chronic Pain--Without...

Suggested reading in Manual Medicine

Recommended Reading Cyriax's Illustrated Manual of Orthopaedic Medicine Cyriax is one of the fathers of manual medicine and this is one of several works by him. Found on Amazon.PNT Pain Neutralization Technique: An Unprecedented Revolution in Pain Management Pain...

Suggested reading about other therapies

Recommended Reading Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual Janet Travell and David Simons wrote these classic tomes (volume 1 and 2) on trigger points. Found on Amazon. Travell and Simons' Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual:...

Suggested reading in prolotherapy / regenerative medicine

Recommended Reading Art Of Regenerative Injections This is a classic and “must have” for anyone doing prolotherapy – and used by the HHPF in training. View it online at: https://joelbaumgartnermd.com/books Regenerative Injections can lead to decreased pain and...

Temporomandibular Dysfunction Treated With Prolotherapy

Dr. Francois Louw, a physician from the Department of Family Practice at the university of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, advances the body of knowledge in the treatment of temporomandibular dysfunction in his article appearing in the May 2019 issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, where he found that using a simple and inexpensive alternative treatment with an intraarticular injection of dextrose reduced pain and increased mobility in this hard-to-treat patient population.

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Other Associations

FIMM
International Federation for Manual/Musculoskeletal Medicine

AAOM
American Association of Orthopaedic Medicine

AOAPRM
American Osteopathic Association of Prolotherapy Regenerative Medicine

AOA
American Osteopathic Association