Useful Information

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 £58 (or £60 for specialist physiotherapy appointments) and £48 for follow up appointments.

Fees for soft Tissue Therapy and Massage will be £50 for the first treatment and hour long sessions and £40 for half an hour 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?

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

Post Treatment Advice Hand Therapy

You may temporarily feel some increased tenderness after your initial assessment and treatment. This is not unusual but if you are worried or would like advice please do not hesitate to contact the practice. 01923 855884

  • You will be given exercises (if appropriate). These will need to be carried out on regular basis. They should NOT increase your pain levels, if this should occur and you feel they have been carried out correctly, please discontinue the exercises until you have seen or spoken to your therapist.
  • If the area is swollen, please try to elevate your hand as much as possible.
  • Try to keep the unaffected areas moving as much as possible.
  • Contrast bathing: Alternating hot & cold water treatments will help reduce swelling, decrease pain, control inflammation and so improve mobility of the affected area. Immerse the area for 30 seconds each in hand hot water followed by immersion in iced cold water. Alternating the hot and cold so that you end in the hot water. (x4 hot, x3 cold)

Repeat this procedure 2-3 times a day until the swelling is under control.

  • Surgical wounds: If you experience any of the below symptoms, please contact the hospital from where your operation was carried out or your GP.
  • Sudden increased pain levels
  • Hot to touch
  • Throbbing sensation
  • Foul smelling odour coming from the wound site
  • Splints: if you have been fabricated a splint. These should not be left in direct sunlight, on the radiator, front seat of your car or in hot water as this will alter the shape and therefore lose its function.

If you feel that a small area is uncomfortable, please do not hesitate to contact your therapist to correct this for you.

Splints can be cleaned using cool soapy water and a soft toothbrush.

If you should have any questions or concerns regarding your treatment/condition; Please do not hesitate to contact the practice.

General Hints

You may temporarily feel some increased tenderness after treatment. This is not unusual but if you are worried or would like advice please do not hesitate to call the practice 01923855884

Sitting

If you have low back pain avoid sitting.

If sitting is unavoidable, use an upright chair.

Use a cushion to raise your hips above your knees.

Stand up every twenty minutes.

Driving involves sitting and long journeys should be broken up.

Lie

  1. on your back with a pillow under your knees; or,
  2. on your side, knees bent with a pillow between them.

Placing a duvet under your sheet may make a hard bed more comfortable.

A rolled towel around your neck may help relieve neck pain.

Movements

Avoid repetitive movements eg, reaching, stretching and twisting, even for small items.

Avoid sudden movements, move slowly, particularly when moving or stretching

Cold packs – If recommended

Cover the area to be treated with a thin cloth.  Apply the cold pack (frozen peas, gel pack)- for the first 24 hours after the injury or treatment on the area for no more than 5 minutes every hour – subsequently for 15 minutes every 3-4 hours.

We understand that people have demands upon them and although we might advise rest this is often along the lines of “a change is good as a rest”. We shall be happy to give you practical advice about work stations, caring for young children, training for competitive sport or undertaking general exercise.