or Osteopathy in the Cranial Field
Cranial Osteopathy utilizes the practical relationship of the anatomical and physiological
mechanisms in the cranium and their interaction with the body as a whole.
It includes a comprehensive system of diagnosis and therapeutic procedures for the prevention and treatment of disease
Osteopathy (or Osteopathy in the Cranial Field) is a concept first put
forth by William Garner Sutherland, D.O. who
expanded on an observation already referred to by Andrew
Taylor Still, M.D. Dr. Sutherland determined there is a palpable movement within the body that occurs
simultaneously with the motion of the cranial bones.
Sutherland proposed a model called the "Primary Respiratory Mechanism"
(PRM) to describe the inherent forces that drive this cranial rhythm. He
used this terminology to suggest an essential, vital rhythmic force functioning
through the cooperation of a
number of physical elements. These consist of the mutually dependent
relationship of five components:
- The natural, inherent motion
of the brain and spinal cord
- Fluctuation of the
- Mobility of the membranes
within the cranium and spinal column
- Unified motion of the cranial
- The involuntary motion of the
tailbone between the pelvic bones
Cranial Osteopathy uses the primary respiratory mechanism to diagnose and
treat problems within the cranium and throughout the entire body. This
natural rhythm of alternating expansion and contraction can be felt from any part of the body by a trained physician. This is because the
effects every cell, influencing and guiding the physiology of the whole body.
thorough understanding of anatomy, physiology and embryology is crucial in order
to effectively perform cranial osteopathy. Therefore, the teaching
of this art and science has been limited to D.O.s, M.D.s, and D.M.D.s
(dentists) because these practitioners have
an extensive medical background. Hundreds of hours of study and
training are required for understanding of this field. Certification
is given only after 5 years of training and competency testing.
trained in cranial osteopathy can feel subtle changes in the PRM as it relates to
problems in the body. Even small alterations of an infant skull's natural shape or motion can lead to disorders such as colic, swallowing
difficulty, frequent spitting up or developmental delay. If
left untreated, these cranial patterns can lead to a
number of problems in adulthood. Head trauma can also cause altered
cranial patterns which can manifest as back pain, headaches, breathing and digestive disorders, joint
For many years it was believed that the bones in the cranium fused at an
early age and did not move. However, modern diagnostic imaging has
proven the existence of motion in the cranium.
osteopathy is a very effective and profound treatment modality that can be
safely applied in the treatment of infants, children and adults.
& Integrative Medicine Associates, PC
T. Gentile, D.O.
and Lauren J. Ramsay, PA-C
4901 W. 38th Avenue
hours: Mon -Thurs 7:30 am to 5:30 pm
7:30 am to 3:00 pm