Knowledge is not inborn; it is acquired and it grows - William A Kuchera DO
image by: U.S. Department of Agriculture
"The old Blumstein’s department store sits across 125th Street from the legendary Apollo Theater. It’s something of a Harlem landmark, where “don’t buy where you can’t work” protests led to the hiring of African-Americans as the first salesclerks in 1934 and where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was stabbed by a mentally unstable woman during a book signing in 1958. Now a row of colorful clothing and jewelry stores lines the ground floor. But the rest of the building has been gutted and fitted with lecture halls, classrooms, laboratories and a library to house the Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine.
Harlem is a fitting location for Touro’s new medical school. Many osteopathic schools have an added mission: to dispatch doctors to poorer neighborhoods and towns most in need of medical care.
“The island of Manhattan has lots of doctors, but not here in Harlem,” said Dr. Robert B. Goldberg, dean of the college, which taught its first class in 2007.
Inside, Touro seems indistinguishable from a conventional medical school — what doctors of osteopathic medicine, or D.O.s, call allopathic, a term that some M.D.s aren’t much fond of. A walk through the corridors finds students practicing skills on mannequins hard-wired with faulty hearts. They dissect cadavers. They bend over lab tables, working with professors on their research. And, unlike their allopathic counterparts, they spend roughly five hours a week being instructed in the century-old techniques of osteopathic medicine, manipulating the spine, muscles and bones in diagnosis and treatment.
In one classroom, several students lay flat on examining tables while classmates, under the guidance of Dr. Mary Banihashem, worked over their necks. She reminded them to use the patient’s eyes as a reference point in judging alignment as they assess neck motion, “We’re looking for any tenderness” in neck muscles, she said.
Gabrielle Rozenberg, in her second year at Touro, remembers the Ur-moment that would lead her to this somewhat unconventional path in medicine. Growing up on Long Island, she suffered from chronic ear infections. Her doctor recommended surgery. But before committing to an invasive procedure, her parents took her to a D.O. — a physician whose skills are comparable to those of an M.D. In several visits, he performed some twists and turns of her neck and head, and within days the infection cleared up. “The infection happened because of fluid in the ear,” she explained, “and the manipulations opened up the ear canal.” The infection didn’t come back.
Ms. Rozenberg began thinking about one day becoming a doctor of osteopathic medicine herself.
Many are drawn to the field for this more personal, hands-on approach and its emphasis on community medicine and preventive care. There are pragmatic reasons as well. Medical schools are failing to keep pace with the patient population, and competition for careers in medicine is growing fiercer. More students see osteopathy as a sensible alternative to conventional medical school, a way to get a medical education with M.C.A.T. scores that may not make the cut for traditional medical schools. According to the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine, students entering osteopathic schools last year scored, on average, 27, compared to 31 for M.D. matriculants. Incoming M.D. students average a 3.69 grade-point average, versus 3.5 for D.O. matriculants.
Yet it should be noted: Getting into osteopathic school is still excruciatingly tough. Last fall, almost 16,500 students applied for some 6,400 spots. Touro this year received 6,000 applications for 270 first-year seats for the Manhattan school and a new campus opening this summer in Middletown, N.Y. (The average M.C.A.T. score for students entering this fall was just a point below the M.D. average.)
Are Osteopathic Physicians Real Doctors?
After coming across what was in my opinion a rather biased and poorly-researched article at Forbes.com, “Osteopaths Versus Doctors” by Steven Salzberg, I felt compelled to set the record straight. As an osteopathic physician myself, I realize that there is a lot of misinformation out there about a variety of non-M.D. medical practitioners, but to question whether an osteopath is a qualified doctor strikes me as arrogant and ill-informed.
Second Thoughts On Osteopathic Medicine
My previous post on osteopathic medical training--suggesting that osteopathic physicians, on average, may not be as good as doctors with MD degrees--received a flood of negative comments. In retrospect, it was too harsh.
The DO Difference
It makes a difference when your physician is trained to truly listen. To pay more attention to you than your chart. To look beyond the symptoms and take the time to get to know you as a whole person.
Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine are complete physicians who practice in every medical specialty. DOs are trained to first consider the person within the patient.
All of the Osteopath practices registered with the Osteopath Network are qualified to practise in the UK and are also registered with the General Osteopathic Council (GOC) which supervises all UK Osteopaths. In addition to satisfying all the educational and regulatory requirements of the GOC, the Osteopath Network has its own more stringent admission criteria for clinics wishing to participate in the Network.
The only web site to present osteopathic philosophy, that may save
an American Medical Reformation.
Osteopathic Research Web
Osteopaths are regularly challenged by insurance companies, MDs and other healthcare professionals for not having any scientific research to back up osteopathic medicine. At the same time there is a lot of interesting research done all over the world that is relevant to osteopathy but hardly known.
Welcome to Sacral Musings, a social network primarily for health care professionals interested in osteopathy.
Keeping you up to date on osteopathic medicine.
The Student Doctor Network
This comprehensive site provides an explanation of osteopathic and allopathic medicine and compares the two, provides osteopathic links, and includes a chat room where premed and medical students can post questions and have them answered by peers. It is also an informative site where pre-osteopathic students can ask questions and communicate with other osteopathic and pre-osteopathic students from all over the country.
American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians
The American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians, founded in 1975, exists to support high quality emergency care, promote and protect the interests of Osteopathic emergency physicians, ensure the highest standards of postgraduate education, and provide leadership in research through the Foundation for Osteopathic Emergency Medicine, in a distinct unified profession.
American Osteopathic Association
Serving as the professional family for more than 100,000 osteopathic physicians (DOs) and osteopathic medical students, the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) promotes public health and encourages scientific research.
American Osteopathic Board of Emergency Medicine
Members of the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians (ACOEP), had established residency training programs in osteopathic emergency medicine. This had been approved by the actions of the Council on Post-doctoral Training of the American Osteopathic Association.
British Institute of Osteopathy
The purpose of this website is to promote traditional osteopathic practice as first disseminated by Andrew Taylor Still in June 1874 and his followers. It will be contributed to by practitioners who are inspired to work this way, and by patients who have sought out this approach as an alternative modus - all wishing to disseminate their experience.
College of Osteopathic Medicine
Welcome to the on-line, continuing medical education site at Michigan State University's College of Osteopathic Medicine. This home page is your gateway to a unique and effective learning experience.
Foundation for Osteopathic Emergency Medicine
FOEM was founded in 1998 and established as a 501(c)3 charitable organization by the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians (ACOEP) as a philanthropic arm of the osteopathic emergency medicine community. Its purpose is to develop grants and awards to support research in emergency medicine conducted by or under the jurisdiction of osteopathic physicians.
General Osteopathic Council
The General Osteopathic Council (GOsC) regulates the practice of osteopathy in the United Kingdom. By law osteopaths must be registered with the GOsC in order to practise in the UK.
Osteopathic Physicians, also known as Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine or Doctors of Osteopathy (D.O.), diagnose and treat all illnesses and injuries and many specialize in treating back pain.
SpineUniverse is the most trusted source of quality, doctor-written information on spine health. Our leading spine experts are here to help you find relief today from your back pain, neck pain, or other spine condition. Browse our exhaustive video library, get tips on back pain exercises, and visit our Community section to discuss your pain.
YourSpine.com makes it easier for consumers to find a qualified chiropractic professional, and aims to educate patients about the important role spinal fitness plays in their overall health. Well-educated, informed patients are equipped with the knowledge to take control of their health management and decisions for the duration of their lives.