Common Problems

Arthritic Pain

Degeneration of the joints begins approximately at 20 years of age. Our genetics, lifestyle and previous injuries can accelerate this chronic condition into acute pain, swelling and or restriction. It predominately effects our weight bearing joints and unbalances the bodies mechanics. Osteopathic treatment help to promotes the circulation to the joints synovial fluid, which provides nutrition to cartilage. In balancing the bodies mechanics pressure through the effected area and compensatory areas are encourage to move and circulate freely reducing further change. Some may be encouraged to try specific activities and nutrition advice. 

Chest Pain & Deformity 

Direct injury, coughing, pressure to the ribs and chronic breathing problems can cause musculoskeletal pain in the chest which osteopathic treatment can help to regain normal movement to aid in its repair.

Deformity conditions are hereditary and usually present from birth. They tend not to be too much of a problem unless the rib cage is severely twisted of deformed, in many cases osteopathic treatment can be of benefit and will help to improve rib movement and reduce spinal twists that compensate for the chest deformity.

Carpel Tunnel

Symptoms of carpel tunnel syndrome include pain, pins and needles, numbness and weakness of the middle three fingers of the hand. it is the result of compression on the median nerve within the carpel tunnel of the hand. It can be caused by inflammation of its ‘sheath’ or fluid retention in pregnancy. A selection of osteopathic techniques and exercises can help release pressure on the nerve .

Chronic Fatigue and ME

Perrin technique is a manual system of diagnosis and treatment that has helped many hundreds of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome / ME since 1989. For more information visit:

Frozen Shoulder

The capsule in the shoulder can be placed under stressed through injury and chronically over worked through poor posture. The capsule inflames repeatedly, and starts to adhere to itself. The shoulder’s ability to move  become reduced, sometimes suddenly. It will heal itself with rest over 18 months. It moves through 3 stages – freezing, frozen, and thawing. Osteopath can aid its recovery and reduce its recovery time as well as address postural causes of its development. See the article written by Quentin Shaw on Shoulder problems and the swayback posture.

Disc Problems

A common complaint for osteopaths. There are many types of disc injury, ranging from a mild bulge / herniation to a complete prolapse where the fluid from the disc has leaked out and is compressing a nerve. Disc injuries require careful and gentle treatment and severe cases may require surgery.

If you have previously had surgery to remove discs or fuse the spine we can also help with rebalancing the spine to reduce any pressure areas that build up due to the fusions/weaknesses as when one area is fused it can create other areas to have increased strain. It is recommended to bring reports (MRI scan) to your consultation). 

Knee Pain

The knee joint is a complex joint and also is an area prone to having referred pain from a lower back / disc or nerve problem, therefore knee pain may not necessarily mean a problem with your knee. Quite often knee joints suffer early degeneration due an imbalance of the weight bearing through the knees due to a pelvic twist, the twist causes the axis of one hip to rotate inwards which throws more weight onto that knee and therefore the increased strain and stress create wear and tear. If surgery seems the only option we will refer you to your GP and help you with rehabilitation.

Hip and Groin Pain

Hip and groin pain has many cause, a thorough clinical assessment normally indicates the appropriate treatment or further investigation required. 

There are many different causes of hip and groin pain, and it isn’t always due to a problem with the actual hip joint. A problem in your lower back may cause referred pain to the hip, or a muscular spasm in the gluteal region due to chronic bad posture will refer pain to the hip. There may also be degeneration (osteoarthritis) of the hip joint. Or a simple groin strain. We will be able to diagnose the source of the problem and refer you for x-rays if needed. Treatment will aim to balance and align the hip joints with the spine, release tight muscles and any extra pressures from the hip. If a hip replacement is necessary we can help with rehabilitation.

Neuralgia/ Nerve Pain

Osteopaths commonly diagnose and treat trapped nerves. A trapped nerve will cause shooting pain, burning pain, pins and needles, change sensation, muscular twitching, weakness, and or spasms. A full neurological clinic examination is often performed to find to location of the nerve followed by common clinic orthopaedic tests to determine the likely cause. In some cases a referral for further investigation may be required (x-ray or MRI scan). In the majority of case osteopaths are able to successfully treat trapped nerves via releasing mechanical pressure as part of an integrated treatment approach. 

Muscular Tendon & Ligament Injuries 

We will carry out tests to diagnose the tissue causing your pain, in any area of the body. If we suspect a problem that requires a scan or specialist referral we can advise you on the appropriate steps to take.

Pelvic & Cocyxx Pain

Classical Osteopaths will always asses your pelvis as it is at the base of the spine and involved in many biomechanical and reflex movement of the body. The pelvis is a bony ring, with 5 joints allowing small amounts of movement between them. These joint provide transition of movement through the spine to our legs and vice versa. Misalignment of one or more of these joints can cause direct pain are transfer mechanically cause problems to other joints in the pelvis joints, spine, leg, shoulder and neck. The sacroiliac can become misplaced during pregnancy, from a fall or jolt, this can cause the other sacroiliac to become hypermobile and overstretch ligaments (causing pain). If left further compensation can develop in other region other the biomechanics. Pain from the sacroiliac commonly causes sciatica, producing sharp pains in the buttock and legs.

The coccyx (a humans remnant tailbone), is our tail bone at the bottom tip of the spine. It can get damaged in child birth or falls onto the bottoms. It can twist, tuck under or even dislocation from the sacrum. Its can be treated indirectly through balancing the pelvis using articulatory, mild adjustment and balancing techniques for the ligaments. 

The Pubic Synthesis can become displaced during pregnancy, through impact, postoperative complication and found in keen cyclist. Its treatment can vary according to the cause of this condition and may need the use of a support ‘sacroiliac belt’ during its rehabilitation. Exercises and advise is often part to the recovery with all pelvic dysfunction.

Please follow this great link for further information on Symphysis Pubic Dysfunction:


The sciatic nerve starts encased in the top of the lumbar spine and emerges out of the lower two lumbar vertebrae and top of the sacrum. It passes behind the buttocks and down the back of the leg, supply sensation form the leg, and giving strength to our muscles. Sciatica described the symptom of pain when this nerve is irritated. This can be from disc problems, degeneration of the spine, a tight muscle in the buttocks ... to name just a few. Spinal problems causing sciatica cause pain in the leg, the back often feels pain free. Finding the source of the irritation to the sciatica is very important in diagnosis and selecting the right treatment. Biomechanical causes to irritation are very common and balance of the spinal mechanics is very effective. Where appropriate referrals may be necessary to discover the cause of the sciatica. 

Sports Injuries

Osteopaths are able to correct structural problems arising from injury which can reduce healing times and prevent future injury. We will advise you on stretches and rehabilitation exercises.

Trapped Nerves

Osteopaths commonly diagnose and treat trapped nerves. A trapped nerve will cause shooting pain, burning pain, pins and needles, change sensation, muscular twitching, weakness, and or spasms. A full neurological clinic examination is often performed to find to location of the nerve followed by common clinic orthopaedic tests to determine to likely cause. In some cases a referral for further investigation may be required (x-ray  or MRI scan). In the majority of case osteopaths are able to successfully treat trapped nerves via releasing mechanical pressure as part of an integrated treatment approach. 

Osteopaths have a duty to the health of there patients and will encourage them to seek medical advice and treatment where necessary.  Osteopaths are taught the following conditions at undergraduate and postgraduate level. These can be one of a number of treatment options explained by their osteopath or discussed with their GP

Back Pain

4 out of 5 people suffer from back pain at some point in their life, the role of pain is to make us aware of the fault so that we can fix the problem, (sadly we don’t treat our bodies like an expensive car – if a warning light comes on, one takes the car straight to the garage!). We often ignore or put up with the pain and the longer spinal faults go unchecked the more the body has to compensate for the problem and the more widespread the strain suffered by the skeleton as a whole. The body is very good at compensating though – lucky for us! So whilst your back pain may seem to have gone away after a strain or injury, quite often it hasn’t! – The pressure may have been taken away due to the compensations made, but the problem still exists – just more comfortably for you. Prolonged compensations however lead to a disruption of the spinal mechanics and one day the bodies compensatory mechanism reaches its limit and a severe acute and debilitating back pain can arise from a simple movement (putting socks on, twisting etc) this is why it is so important to have past injuries checked and recent injuries dealt with quickly and completely. We will not only find and treat the root cause of your problem but will advise you on rehabilitation and preventative measures to reduce future problems.

Headaches & Migraines

Headaches can be a common symptom of poor spinal balance creating tension throughout the muscles of the upper back and neck leading to a reduction of blood supply to the head, or congestion in the head as the blood cannot move freely to and from the head (cervicogenic headache). Other factors such as diet, stress and chemical / hormonal imbalances may also contribute. There are many children and adults suffering from chronic headaches unnecessarily, and whilst painkillers can help to alleviate the pain they do not address the cause, and long term use can be harmful.

A thorough medical history will be taken to assess all of these factors. Most cervicogenic headaches can be relieved by a course of osteopathic treatment.

Neck Pain

Is a common problem osteopaths deal with, it can have many causes. The neck can become acutely locked, or strain of the neck (occasionally with headaches). Modern work life of computers smart phones and deskwork, reduces daily movement of the average neck leading to muscles begin to shorten and become tight, this can cause tension across the shoulders, affecting the circulation to the head causing headaches.

Compensations are commonly found in the neck as pain due to our ‘balance centres’ keeping our head level when our bodies move from restriction and discomfort of our bodies. Neck is also treated with and in consideration to the body as a whole. 

Repetitive Strain

Golfers Elbow / Tennis Elbow / Tendonitis / Tenosynovitis / Mouse Wrist.

Repetitive movements can inflame muscles and cause micro-tearing around the tendon, muscular sheath, ligament with associated swelling around the affected joints. The pain can be very slight to very severe. In an Osteopathic approach to treatment, resting the effected area recommended, and learning how our ergonomics and posture can aid recovery and prevent recurrence. Soft tissue treatment locally and balancing of the body mechanics can aid towards a faster and fuller recovery.  Exercise to strengthening the effected is recommended and guided. Treatment will vary depending on the cause of the problem, we have techniques designed specifically to release the swelling and painful / over-tight muscles around the area and if the problem is more complex, the whole spine and pelvis may need addressing.


Scoliosis is a complex three-dimensional spinal curvature. The spine curves sideways and rotates causing an “S” or “C” shaped spine. The most commonly affected areas are the chest (thoracic scoliosis) or the lower back (lumbar scoliosis). The spinal deformity is accompanied by an imbalance in the ribs and associated musculature. 

Scoliosis can be hereditary so if you or someone in your family has it, we recommend any children to have a spinal assessment. Scoliosis can also be an acquired problem and develop at any age as the spine may be twisting due to a chronic problem occurring in the pelvis from a fall or injury that causes a misalignment in the pelvic base therefore the spine becomes curved to compensate. Correcting these pelvic problems can reduce many scoliotic tendencies.

A Typical Treatment Plan
Will Aim to

Increase postural awareness


Reduce pain


Reduce the progression
of the scoliosis

Specific exercises will be given to reduce the rotation of the spine and maintain balance within the spinal column. Quentin Shaw specialises in spinal problems including scoliosis. If a scoliosis is particularly severe surgery may be the only option, however osteopathic treatment can still help to rebalance the soft tissues once the spine is fused.