The initial purpose of the consultation is to gather the information required to establish a working diagnosis. This is the first definition of the problem, and it allows the formulation of a plan for treatment and advice both in the short and long term. This is also an opportunity to clarify that the patient is indeed suitable for osteopathic treatment by ruling out any medical cause for the condition.
A comprehensive case history is taken that not only covers the presenting condition, but the previous medical history in some considerable detail. A thorough physical examination is then conducted for which you may be asked to undress to your underwear to allow a clear view of your posture, to examine mobility, and conduct a range of tests, all of which help to clarify the condition and its underlying causes. You are never required to undress beyond the underwear, and you are asked to to make it clear if undressing makes you uncomfortable for any reason. Being able to view the area concerned does help greatly, but the wish is to never make you feel anxious in any way. You may feel more comfortable bringing shorts to wear during your visits.
Once a diagnosis is established then this is clearly explained, together with detail of the treatment plan, the techniques that may be employed, and an initial estimate of how many treatments may be required. Normally there is time towards the end of this first visit for some treatment and advice.