Osteopathy is a system of diagnosis and treatment for a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions. Practitioners are statutorily regulated primary healthcare professionals, who work mainly in the private healthcare sector but some osteopaths also work in primary, secondary and tertiary care in the NHS.


Osteopaths take a detailed case history and perform a thorough clinical examination to help understand the nature of your pain and symptoms so that they can arrive at a diagnosis. Practitioners use touch, physical manipulation, stretching and massage to help increase the mobility of joints, to relieve muscle/joint tension and pain. Osteopaths often combine a range of other treatment techniques in their approach, such as rehabilitative exercises, advice about how you can self-manage your condition and educational approaches to help you understand your pain and the factors which influence it.


In the UK, osteopaths are trained to decide as to whether assessment or treatment from other healthcare professionals in necessary, such as referral for further tests (eg x-ray or MRi scan), or for an opinion from a medical specialist. Your osteopath will discuss this should the need arise during the course of your treatment.


What can osteopathy help with?

Osteopathic treatment can be helpful for problems associated with many areas of the body and variety of musculoskeletal conditions, including:

  • Back pain and sciatica
  • Neck and shoulder pain/stiffness
  • Headaches arising from the neck (cervicogenic)
  • Muscle and joint pain related to desk/computer work
  • Fronzen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis)
  • Sports injuries

Will I benefit from osteopathy treatment?

The effectiveness of osteopathic treatment for back pain and sciatica has been recognised by The National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE). The most recent NICE guidelines recommend manual therapy (e.g. osteopathy, spinal manipulation, spinal mobilisation and massage) combined with exercise and advice for the early management of back pain and sciatica.


Initial Consultation 60 minutes – £90

Subsequent Treatments 45 minutes – £70


Most private and medical insurance schemes cover osteopathy but individual policies may vary. Some insurance companies require a referral from your doctor. Should you like to be treated under insurance cover, please contact your insurer to find out their requirements and notify reception when making your booking.

Book your appointment

If you’re experiencing back pain, sciatica or another musculoskeletal problem, Dr Oliver Thomson can provide effective evidence-based treatment and advice. He is based at BodyMatters Clinic, located at 1 McCrone Mews, Belsize Park, London, NW3. With free on-site parking, it is easily accessible via car or public transport (Jubilee and Northern tube lines) from central London, Camden, Hampstead, Golders Green, St John’s Wood, Primrose Hill, Swiss Cottage, West Hampstead and Chalk Farm.

Appointments can be booked online or calling 0207 419 7900.