What to Expect on Your First Visit to The Chiltern Vale Clinic of Osteopathic & Naturopathic Medicine

Your Medical Case History

Before we start to treat you, a detailed case history will be taken including information regarding your personal details, the present complaint, past medical history, family medical history, general health, previous treatment and investigations (i.e. blood tests, imaging), information pertaining to diet and medication / supplementation, and what is happening in your life, as these may give clues to help our diagnosis. N.B. Children under the age of 16 years must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

Examination

A detailed examination of the problem area(s) and other relevant areas is undertaken with your consent. This includes postural / movement analysis, special tests, and clinical tests, which can include: blood pressure, pulse, reflexes, muscle strength and more.

We will examine your whole body from head to toe as many problems have their root cause away from the area of complaint. For example, a lower back problem may be due to problems in the rib cage, pelvis or lower limbs. This will also allow an appreciation for potential problems in other areas to be avoided in the future.

We usually look at your posture and how you move your body. We may also assess what happens when we move it for you and see what hurts, where and when.

At the end of the examination Matthew will explain what your diagnosis is, and a plan of action is then discussed as to how best to remedy the problem. We may sometimes feel that Osteopathy is not appropriate for you and refer you to your GP or another specialist such as an orthopaedic surgeon.

Treatment

A multitude of factors will determine the best course of treatment, which will be explained to you. Treatment is seldom the same for different problems and people, as it is uniquely tailored to you.

Osteopathic treatment may include techniques such as different types of soft tissue massage and joint articulation to release tension, stretch muscles, help relieve pain and mobilise your joints. Sometimes, when we move joints you may hear a ‘click’. This is just like the click some people induce in their knuckles and finger joints. We may discuss exercises that you can do to improve your posture and movement in your workplace and everyday life.

Naturopathic treatment may focus more on diet and nutrition, stress management, exercise prescription, rest, relaxation, fasting, detoxification, hydrotherapy, for example. For more detail of the conditions and techniques used please see the individual Osteopathy and Naturopathy pages.

Aftercare

Post-treatment recommendations will be given including things that you can do such as exercises, dietary / lifestyle advice, hydrotherapy to help yourself in-between treatments. This may range from some simple stretches to indepth dietary, exercise and lifestyle analysis. Rest and adequate water to may also be suggested as some patients can feel tired after treatments, due to your body needing energy to heal itself.

What to bring

What to wear

As with any medical examination, you will probably be asked to undress to your underwear, so please wear something you are comfortable in.

If you are feeling anxious

Feeling anxious about your first visit is quite understandable. If you have any concerns please discuss these, so that any concerns can be discussed and resolved.

Are there any adverse effects after treatment?

You may experience some soreness for 1-3 days after treatment. Occasionally treatment may ‘bring out’ the symptoms so they may worsen for 24 hours before they improve. If symptoms do not improve after 48-72 hours then please phone the clinic, as we will be able to advise you as to the best course of action.

What if I have to stay off work?

As an Osteopath Matthew can provide you with an ‘off work’ certificate if needed.