Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Worth Knowing

A general question always comes if Chiropractors and Osteopaths are similar kind of health professionals or there are any differences between them. Well! There are certain differences between the two and we will take a look on the differences between chiropractor and osteopath in this article of ours.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Worth Knowing

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on Residency and Internship

While in their training, Chiropractors go for 1 year internship that coincides with clinical courses. Here, there is no Residency required, but they have an option to complete in case they desire to.

Any licensed DO (Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine) can practice OMM (Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine). Though typically at least 3 years of residency is essential, it varies. These are considered to be the most demanding residencies in the world, where they have 80 hours of in-hospital practice per week.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on Practice

Chiropractors can have private practice clinics in general. However, some chiropractors are employed by health systems and hospitals. There are some chiropractors who perform Generalist practice, neurology related, orthopaedic related and general alignment restoration dealing with skeletal system.

Osteopaths practice in private clinics and public hospitals, there are some of them who prefer family practices, community clinics etc.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on Treatment Techniques

Chiropractors perform chiropractic adjustment ranging from soft tissue mobilization to joint adjustment. They can also perform electrical stimulation, acupuncture, pain management etc.

Osteopaths go for manual therapy called OMT or Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment. They can also perform other techniques like Counter-strain techniques, Deep tissue technique, Myofascial technique, etc. Osteopathic Manipulative medicines is also used to treat sinus infections, headaches, earaches, respiratory issues etc.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on Ability to Prescribe Medications

Chiropractors cannot prescribe medications. However, New Mexico recently allowed limited prescription rights to Doctors of Chiropractic Medicine.

However, Doctors of Osteopathic medicine have full medical licenses in the United States and they can prescribe any medication when required.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on Years of Medical School

Chiropractors study 4 to 5 undergraduate years, 5 years of chiropractic school, 1 year of residence. Minimum 10 years of study is required for chiropractors.

Osteopaths study 3 to 4 undergraduate years(bachelor’s degree required), 4 years of Medical school, 3 years residency. Osteopaths also study minimum of 10 years of their medical schools

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based On Board Certification

Chiropractors appear for National examinations, Chiropractic Board at the State Level and Diplomat Specialty Boards.

Osteopaths require at least 3 years of residency training. Most of the OMM specialists complete OMM subspecialty training of 1 to 2 years after the residency training.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences based on Specialization

Chiropractors have specializations like paediatrics, orthopaedics, general rehab, radiology, Internal disorders, Neurology, Nutrition, Occupational health, Forensic sciences, Sports Medicine etc.

Doctors of Osteopathic Medicines or Osteopaths apply for same specialty residencies as their M.D or doctors of medicine colleagues.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on General Expertise

Doctors of Chiropractic or DCs have evidence for supporting their expertise in the adjustment of the spine. Chiropractors knowledge extends into the scope of physical therapy and general medicine and also radiology and neurology.

Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine or DOs are complete medical physicians just like the MDs or Doctors of Medicines. Many of the Osteopaths specialize in fields where they do not use OMM or Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine, but some choose to specialize in OMM. Osteopaths are trained in all body systems, but are also trained in OMM.

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on Diagnosis

DCs or Doctor of Chiropractic diagnose most medical conditions depending on the state law, which include diagnosing joint subluxation complexes.

DOs or the Doctors of Osteopathic medicine can diagnose any of the neuromusculoskeletal disorders and also any other medical problem

Chiropractor Vs Osteopath: Differences Based on Use and application of Chiropractic Manipulation and Physical Therapy

Chiropractors are the only practitioners with the expertise in Chiropractic Adjustments. In most states, they perform therapeutic modalities. There are laws in some states that prevent any other practitioner from performing these chiropractic manipulations.

DOs are the only physicians who are allowed to perform OMM or Osteopathic Manipulative Medicines on patients.

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Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:April 15, 2017

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