About Andrew Gilmour - Osteopath

Andrew Gilmour has practised as a full time Osteopath in Ipswich for more than 30 years having qualified from the British School of Osteopathy in 1978. In the early days osteopaths had 'horns' and were often branded as 'charlatans'. It is hard to believe that before 1980 a doctor could be 'struck off' for referring a patient to an Osteopath. The change in 'The General Medical Council Rules' was the first of many important steps to the recognition which Osteopathy enjoys today. Andrew Gilmour has been priviledged to witness and be involved in the process of change.
Andrew Gilmour  given back to the Osteopathic profession on a National basis. He has served on its governing body, the General Osteopathic Council, its Public Relations, Ethics, Education and Research Advisory Committees.
Andrew Gilmour undertook a further degree in the mid 1990's, and sat on the board of The British School of Osteopathy where he also acted as an examiner assessing the Clinical Competence of graduating Osteopaths for more than 15 years. He has occupied the position of validator for The Open University
The practice Andrew Gilmour started in 1978 steadily grew into the Multidisciplinary team it is today, being one of the largest practices in the United Kingdom, offering a wide range of options for patients.
As of April 2010 Andrew Gilmour relinquished his partnership in the practice he founded in 1978 to start a new practice, Andrew Gilmour and Associates, in Melton, Woodbridge close to his family home. This new team has a focus on a more personal service in a relaxed environment. . He is committed to a 'work hard, play hard' ethic. Family life, sailing, tennis and the great outdoors are the antedote to long hours in the practice.
Andrew Gilmour's Clinical Approach
Since the outset of his career Andrew Gilmour has been committed to seeking the best treatment solution for each and every patient 's problems. He quickly realised that although Osteopathy has much to offer patients suffering spinal and other skeletal conditions, other disciplines have extremely useful and proven treatment options too. Andrew has always worked with and alongside medical disciplines rather that in conflict with them and this is a fundamental element to his style of practise.
When patients seek help Andrew helps them to explore not only what he can do for them but also what others can offer and then prioritise these options into a treatment plan. He sources other investigations such as X-rays, Ultrasound and MRI scans from Nuffield Health Ipswich. Andrew has a network of doctors consultants and practitioners of all disciplines to whom he refers patients. This network has been built over many years so that he uses only practitioners who have a proven record of expertise and quality of service.
Andrew Gilmour's aims are :-
  1. To listen to your story and be considerate to your individual needs.
  2. Undertake an appropriate examination.
  3. Request further investigations when needed.
  4. To explain his findings and treatment plan.
  5. To let you know what should happen if the initial plan is not successful Carry out treatment as necessary and monitor its effect.
  6. Offer you alternative options if Osteopathy cannot help you.
  7. Review your progress from time to time.
  8. Maintain the necessary qualifications, registration, professional indemnity and continuing professional development.
  9. Carry out the above in an appropriate clinical environment.
Services for patients 
Some of the reasons why patients visit Andrew Gilmour are :-
  • Consultation and treatment :- This is the most common reason to attend. To be given a diagnosis and follow up with a course of treatment for a single episode or to prevent multiple episodes.
  • Consultation only - Some patients require advice only, a second opinion regarding treatment they have already received, or wish to undergo an assessment diagnosis and discussion before commencing treatment.  Others prefer to have self help information rather than attend for a course of treatment.
  • Workstation or Manual handling assessment, usually within the workplace.
  • Home visit :- Usually because patients are in too much pain to be moved from home.
  • Reports :- Medico-legal reportsfor solicitors, employers or other medical practitioners

How and what Andrew Gilmour treats 

Like all Osteopaths, Andrew Gilmour applies treatment using his hands, with you being a passive subject. He use joint 'manipulations' to improve the range of motion of individual joints. You will often feel a 'click' as these 'manipulations' are performed. Other stretching 'articulatory' techniques are employed, to rhythmically stretch the ligaments of a joint, by manually using the patient's limbs as levers. 'Soft tissue' manual techniques are another umbrella term used to describe a wide range of massage type techniques.
Andrew Gilmour believes that the Osteopathic approach is more than a series of manipulations. The skill of an Osteopath is one of blending a number of different manual techniques, to improve skeletal function according to the diagnosis. This is carried out being mindful of your physique and with due regard for you as a whole. This includes prevailing lifestyle factors. These Osteopathic skills are learned through training practice and experience.
Knowing what not to treat is as important as knowing what to treat in Osteopathic practice. Some conditions are inappropriate for Osteopathic treatment and should be referred to other disciplines. Ongoing treatment should not be applied indiscriminately to conditions which are not responding to treatment and alternative options should be sought in these situations.
What can you treat?
Osteopathy is best known for the treatment of spinal problems. These can happen throughout life and for a multitude of reasons such as lifting, accidents, poor posture, worn joints and disc problems to name just a few, Repeated surveys have shown that what most Osteopaths treat most often is spinal pain. 4 out of 5 people will suffer this at some stage in life.
However Andrew's scope of practise is equally concerned with the treatment of mechanical problems, throughout the body, and in patients of any age. 
Examples include:
  • Muscle and joint pains in active and developing children.
  • Sports related injuries such as 'tennis elbow', 'pulled hamstring' or 'strained ankle'.
  • Muscular pain and circulation problems associated with pregnancy and the changing postural mechanics.
  • Work related difficulties, such as repetitive strain and those relating to long hours at a computer, repeated lifting or poor posture. 
  • Problems in later life, for example osteoarthritic hips and knees which hamper activity in later life.
  • Less commonly, there are many other problems of pain and function (such as headache, gastric pain, chest pain, gynaecological pain) which seemingly fall into the remit of medical diagnosis and treatment that, once sinister causes have been ruled out, can turn out to be referred pain of mechanical origin and these are often very satisfying to treat.
There are some situations where manipulation of any strength should be avoided.
Examples are:-
  • Following major trauma where there could be structural damage 
  • Forceful manipulation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Patients with nerve root entrapment should receive judicious treatment 
  • When pain is out of proportion with the clinical findings.
  •  If the patient is too apprehensive or in too much pain
  • Where there is known pathology such as tumour
  • Severe osteoporosis
The General Osteopathic Council states :-
'The risks are minimised in the hands of a properly trained and experienced clinician who is thorough in assessment and monitors progress carefully.'
 At the end of an undergraduate degree programme students undertake a clinical examination which is specifically designed to assess safety and competence to practise.
Can anyone have Osteopathic treatment?
Subject to the above anyone can have Osteopathic treatment. The treatment is geared to the physique of the patient as well as the problem. For example, if one applied the correct level of treatment for a 75 year old frail lady to a twenty five year old 14 stone rugby player it would be ineffective. If one applied the rugby player's treatment to the 75 year old lady she wouldn't say 'thank you'!. The treatment has to be appropriate for the situation and Andrew Gilmour is trained and experienced in this.
Can chronic conditions be treated?
Chronic (longstanding) conditions can be assessed and treated in just the same way as acute (sudden onset more recent) conditions. It is important to realise that in chronic conditions, the tissue changes such as muscle spasm and joint restriction are more established and can be resistant to change. One often expects progress to be slower in chronic conditions. In those with a known underlying reason, such as worn joints or occupations which reinjure an area, periodic preventative treatment can be helpful. Particularly if combined with self help exercises and programmes such as Pilates.
Overzealous or inappropriate treatment can harm patients and Andrew Gilmour is extremely careful to avoid such situations. He has over 35 years of full time practice and has been extensively involved in the training and ethical behaviour of Osteopaths. Whilst there is risk attached to most clinical interventions, this experience within the Osteopathic and clinical arenas helps him to minimise adverse reactions.
For more information regarding Andrew' practice, visit www.gilmourosteo.co.uk





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