Frequently Asked Questions


What is the difference between Osteopathy, Physiotherapy and Chiropractic?

At our practices, osteopaths and physiotherapists work together as a team so patients receive the treatment and advice that is most appropriate for them.

Osteopaths are primary health care practitioners, complementary to other medical practices. They have the ability to diagnose and treat a number of musculoskeletal dysfunctions. Osteopathic treatment sessions are often more gentle and usually involve more treatment of soft tissues, muscles and ligaments with manipulation of joints than chiropractic sessions.

Physiotherapists tend to be more experienced in working with people who have had operations or need exercise and rehabilitation to restore their normal function. Physiotherapists apply therapeutic techniques and intervention in order to assist recovery of functional limitation and disability following injury and disease.

Chiropractors treat the same areas as osteopaths but concentrate particularly on the spine. They don’t do as much work on muscles and tend to do more clicking of joints so their treatments sessions are often shorter.

Will I receive any treatment on my first visit?

Most likely. In the majority of cases treatment will be given. In the rare instance that treatment is not suitable, you will be asked for your permission to be referred to your GP or other healthcare practitioner.

How much does treatment cost?

Your first visit at osteopathics includes a consultation and treatment which costs £55 (or £60 for specialist physiotherapy appointments) and £45 for follow up appointments.

Are all the osteopaths and physiotherapists qualified to do the same things?

All our practitioners are experienced and fully qualified in their field. Some have further qualifications or special interests.

May I bring someone with me to my appointment?

Yes, of course. We want our patients to feel as comfortable as possible. We encourage you to ask any questions and raise any concerns that you may have. Having someone with you during your consultation and treatment may make this much easier for you.

What should I wear?

As with any medical examination, you will probably be asked to undress to your underwear, so please wear something you are comfortable in. For example, some patients opt to wear shorts and sports clothing.

How long will my appointment last?

Your first appointment with an osteopath or physiotherapist will generally last between 40 and 60 minutes. Follow up appointments are generally between 20 to 30 minutes. A few patients seeing a neuro-physiotherapist may need double this length of time on follow up appointments. This will be explained to you at the first appointment.

How many appointments will I need?

The number of appointments required varies according to the patient's needs. Some patients may require just one appointment; whereas others may require several. However, we aim to keep your appointments to a minimum. Your osteopath or physiotherapist will be able to advise you at your first appointment on how many sessions you may require.

Does the treatment hurt?

Some soft tissue treatment may be uncomfortable. Your practitioner will tell you what to expect, and will want you to let them know if you are in pain so they can modify their approach. Some people may experience discomfort after treatment, this is usually nothing to worry about and is a normal, healthy response to the treatment we are delivering.

Do I need a referral from my GP?

No, although some people are referred by GP’s specialists, health visitors or midwives, most of our patients are self referring. However, some insurance companies require you to see your GP first.

Can I claim on my private health insurance?

Yes. We are registered with most healthcare insurers including AXA PPP and BUPA. We always recommend you speak to your insurer first before your first appointment, if you are planning to claim for your treatment.

What are the opening hours of the practices?

Harpenden - Monday to Friday 8.20am to 6pm, Wednesday 8.20am to 9pm, Saturday 9am to 2pm
Radlett - Monday & Tuesday 8am to 6pm, Wednesday 9am to 9pm, Thursday 9am to 6pm, Friday 8am to 7pm, Saturday 9am to 1pm
Hitchin - Monday 10am to 6.40pm, Thursday 1pm to 6.40pm