We, as members of the osteopathic profession, have learned to focus our attention on looking for the osteopathic dysfunction. We find it. We fix it. We leave it alone.


We have not included the traumatic force it took to produce that osteopathic dysfunction. The osteopathic dysfunction is an effect which in turn is leading to other effects “as additional elements enter the contest and give effect the ascendancy” (A.T. Still).

What kind of traumatic forces do we look for? Any injury where a external force produced a strain in body mechanism, from a whiplash to reaching overhead to bring a heavy box off the shelf, or a sudden cough or sneeze.

What about the osteopathic dysfunction we find associated with disease rather that of know traumatic forces? These too are forces, but more subtle in their beginnings.

In either case, trauma or disease, the osteopathic dysfunction or strains we have found are EFFECTS and NOT CAUSES.

To find them and treat them as a unit in themselves is to neglect one half the reason our patient came to us. In this case we are only giving symptomatic relief. We must learn to read through strains and to pick up the beginnings of it as a traumatic or disease process and t include the energies that it took to produce it in our diagnostic and therapeutic procedures.