Osteopathy, or Osteopathic Medicine, is a philosophy, a science, and an art. Its philosophy embraces the concept of the unity of body structure and function in health and disease. Its science includes the chemical, physical, and biological sciences related to the maintenance of health and the prevention, cure, and allevia- tion of disease. Its art is the application of the philosophy and the science in the practice of osteopathic medicine and surgery in all its branches and specialties.
The osteopathic concept emphasizes four general principles from which are derived an etiological concept, a philosophy and a ther- apeutic technic that are distinctive, but not the only features of osteopathic diagnosis and treatment.
1. The body is a unit.
2. The body possesses self-regulatory mechanisms.
3. Structure and function are reciprocally inter-related.
4. Rational therapy is based upon an understanding of body
unity, self-regulatory mechanisms, and the inter-relationship of structure and function.