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A Celebration of Heritage, Achievement & Potential

Seminar Description

  • Seminar A

    Advancing and Refining Functional Methods

    Harry D. Friedman, D.O., FAAO


    Osteopathic physicians have always focused on structural components of health and disease to deliver optimum healthcare to their patients. They consider the relationship between body structure and function to be complementary and reciprocally interactive.

    While various approaches to structural diagnosis and treatment have been favoured, few have presented a biomechanical problem solving and treatment method that considers the function of the neuromusculoskeletal system as a whole. Traditionally, our theoretical framework is grossly refined to the segmental and the positional configuration of the joint and its surrounding tissues. The function of the system as a whole is thought to be enhanced by the proper diagnosis and treatment of these local disturbances.

    But, if we begin to think about these local disturbances as reflections of system-wide dysfunction or disturbed motor programs, then we can appreciate how different parts of the body are interrelated and working together to reinforce body-wide patterns of dysfunction.

    The functional approaches of William L. Johnston, D.O., embraced just this type of problem-solving focus and palpatory development. The segmental disturbance reflects imbalances, within the system as a whole, which can be palpated in response to functional motion demands placed on the entire body. When treated in light of these functional interrelationships, entire motor chains of primary and secondary disturbances, resolve in one treatment procedure.

    In this course, participants will learn palpatory testing procedures for identifying primary motor system disturbances and their resolution using functional treatment methods. Both regional and segmental motion tests will be presented with the emphasis on active “responses” of the tissue to passive motion testing “demands”. Specific attention will be directed at the thoracic cage and its unique expression of 3 different mobile columns posteriorly and its 2 mobile columns anteriorly. Body regions will each be presented in a different section of the course, each one uniquely considered in light of its functional and anatomical relation to the rest of the body. Treatment approaches taught will generally employ an indirect technique, bringing tissues into a state of dynamic balance and ease to affect optimal treatment response.

  • Seminar B

    Understanding Mindfulness/Meditation & the Mind of the Patient

    Ken Allego, RMT, D.O.M.P., D.Sc.O


    Although osteopathy has made great strides in expanding on the basic concepts laid out by the forefathers of early osteopathy, the mind of the patient and therapist are some of the most mysterious yet fascinating ventures that are not understood. However, many great discoveries were given through a practice of mindfulness, dreams falling into the category such as sleep and dreams. Nicholas Bohr discovered the periodic table while Albert Einstein came up with the theory of relativity through a dream. Even A.T. Still seemed to go into a meditative state and was able to figure out the one thing that healed his patient. How did they do it? What was the process behind it?

    This workshop is an exploration of such mindfulness and how it can help us become better practitioners. The workshop is made practical by having the participants reflect on their world and their own experiences. This workshop also gives a practical understanding of mindfulness/meditation and how a consistent practice will help us become better and more sensitive practitioners.

  • Seminar C

    Finding Health in the Field of Immunity

    Tajinder K. Deoora, DO (Hons), Dip Phyt, MSc, FSCCO


    One of the primary drivers for A. T. Still’s philosophy of osteopathy was the death of his three children in the same week from meningitis. His search was towards a reliable system of healing which he reasoned was inherent in the body in that the body contains within itself all the chemicals and medicines necessary for the cure of disease. He saw the biological basis upon which modern pathology, in its histological & chemical aspects went on to be constructed. This is already witnessed by the extraordinarily high survival rates of Spanish flu patients in the USA treated with osteopathy as compared with those treated by the orthodox medicine of the day.

    The July 1919 edition of the Journal of Osteopathy reports the use of paraspinal and suboccipital inhibition. The thinking behind this was to normalise the reflex pathways of the autonomic nervous system to the lungs and even the sub-phrenic immune organs such as the spleen.

    Current research to test some of these old methods has been conducted by Lisa Hodge, PhD (International Journal of Osteopathic Medicine, March 2015) using traditional osteopathic Lymphatic Pump techniques that resulted in a significant increase in immune cells in the circulation. Further research by other authors (Goldstein, 2010, Yao et al., 2014) has shown the effectiveness of osteopathy against infections such pneumonia, whilst research with premature infants (Cerritelli et al., 2013) has shown that osteopathy helped to reduce the length of stay in hospital for premature infants.

    It is in great part thanks to the needs of children’s health and the recognition by Still that through evolution, the body contains the immunological components required for maintenance of health, that we have the gift of osteopathy. Thus, to work with the immune function, especially infections, we need to appreciate how it develops in the infant. We also need to appreciate the different stages of the immune response and how it gets skewed leading to the modern-day phenomenon of hypersensitivity disorders. We will look at some approaches to treating infections in supporting the body to reach an appropriate resolution.

    In the seminar, we will review the development of the immune system in terms of the structural components and how we can work with them. We will also see how the immune response influences the quality of the tissues, and the “patterns” left behind within the tissues, as recognisable “footprints” of any previous illness or disease that has not yet reached resolution in our current day patients. The after-effects of unresolved conditions play a major role in the current state of health of the patient and prognosis and management depends on how we can influence these components within our patients.


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