Traditional Manual Osteopathy

Advanced Health -  - Integrative Functional Medical Clinic

Advanced Health

Integrative Functional Medical Clinic located in Pacific Heights, San Francisco, CA

Osteopathy is a complementary medicine to disease reversal and prevention especially when most other treatments have failed. Osteopathy restores the body’s alignment with gentle manipulation of the muscles, bones, ligaments, organs, and connective tissue.                                                                                                                   Osteopath Julie Duggan B.Sc. sees the human body as a whole unit interconnected by a complex system of connective tissue. Mobility is key in Osteopathy. One affected structure may alter the mobility and function of other surrounding structures and influence the body’s alignment and balance. When there is a lack of motion, balance of health is altered. By bringing back mobility and communication within these interconnected structures, the nervous, circulatory and lymphatic systems are greatly impacted. Julie’s ultimate goal is to reduce inflammation and restart the self-healing potential of the body.

Osteopathy Q&A

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Osteopathy is a complementary medicine to disease prevention and reversal when most other treatments have failed. Osteopathy restores the body’s alignment with gentle manipulations of the muscles, bones, soft tissues and organs. Osteopath Julie Duggan B.Sc. treats the root cause of pain by bringing back mobility and function to the restricted areas of the body. This balances the nervous system, optimizes blood flow and reduces inflammation to allow healing to begin. Julie’s goal is to find the root cause of pain and enhance the self-healing potential of the body.


What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is a drug-free, non-invasive manual therapy that balances all the systems of the body to relieve pain and dysfunction. It improves overall health by regulating the nervous, circulatory and lymphatic systems. Its holistic approach focuses on the health of the whole body instead of just the affected parts.

Osteopathy is best known for the treatment of acute and chronic pain due to injury, poor posture, overwork and stress. It also addresses many other conditions within the digestive, cardiovascular, respiratory, endocrine, urinary and reproductive
systems. Osteopathy optimizes conventional and natural treatments. It allows better organ function, it increases medication and supplement absorption and it helps patients overcome stress patterns that maintain chronic conditions.

Julie sees the human body as a whole unit interconnected by a complex system of connective tissue. When muscles, bones and organs are restricted or misaligned, the body tries to compensate to keep its balance. Julie looks for the root cause of pain by assessing how the body compensates for injury, stress and bad postural habits. Each treatment peels off layers of adaptation until the root cause of the problem is discovered.

Julie is successful in helping men and women, pregnant women, infants and children.

What can Osteopathy help with?


General Body Pain

  • Back, neck, shoulder, elbow, hip, knee pain…
  • Sciatica, carpal tunnel syndrome, jaw pain
  • Chronic fatigue, insomnia
  • Headaches, migraines, vertigo, tinnitus
  • Head trauma, whiplash, sports injuries, concussion
  • Digestive, cardiovascular, respiratory, urinary, reproductive, endocrine issues

Women’s Health

Julie understands how the biomechanics of the pelvis and spine affect the pelvic organs and vice versa. In Osteopathy, the uterus is a reference point for the pelvic ring and when it is out of alignment, a cascade of adaptation and compensation patterns occur leading to postural changes and associated pains and symptoms.

In her treatments, Julie focuses on pressure regulation, blood flow and pelvic organ function. Via gentle manipulations of the skull, spine and sacrum, Julie balances the nervous system in order to stop the inflammatory response and allow healing to

By understanding how the human body functions and what postural and lifestyle adjustments are required, women can thrive at all ages. Julie offers complimentary solutions for women to heal and feel empowered and reconnected with their bodies.


Julie is skilled in helping women through the incredible physical, hormonal and emotional changes during pregnancy. As the fetus grows, it directly impacts the mother’s posture and position of her organs. The maternal posture can also affect the position of the fetus and the risk of a long and difficult labor. Gentle osteopathic manipulations can help create more space for mom to thrive throughout her pregnancy and for the fetus to be more easily delivered.

  • Back/hip/groin pain, sciatica
  • Neck/shoulder pain, numbness in fingers
  • Digestive upsets
  • Preparation for labor and baby positioning
  • Postpartum pain, headaches, urinary incontinence, chronic infections…

Infants and Children

Every single child can greatly benefit from osteopathic treatments. Osteopathy will spare babies from unnecessary discomfort caused by excessive head molding during prolonged or too short labor, umbilical cord tied around the neck, forcep/vacuum, or C-section deliveries where the baby hasn’t adapted well to extreme pressure changes between the uterus and the exterior environment.

Excessive head molding during delivery can cause babies to have trouble feeding, digesting and breathing. Fortunately, newborns will self-correct by balancing their own intracranial pressure through suckling, yawning and crying. Yet, some compressions need the help of experienced hands to gently release and avoid postural and developmental problems during childhood. Osteopathic treatments offer a strong foundation for children to grow into healthy and well balanced adults.


  • Feeding and sleeping difficulties
  • Colic and digestive issues; spitting up, acid reflux, gas pains
  • Stiff neck, flat head syndrome


  • Sports and play injuries
  • Digestive issues
  • Chronic ear infections and colds, asthma
  • Learning and attention disorders, hyperactivity
  • Developmental delays

Best Timing for Osteopathic Treatments

General Rule For All

Early intervention is always key. The longer we wait after injury, the longer the body compensates and the more complex it becomes to treat the initial injury. Instead of treating symptoms locally, Osteopaths peel off layers of adaptation within the body until the root cause of the problem is discovered.

First Visit

First visit includes patient’s history, physical exam and first treatment. The goal is to address the root cause of symptoms by restoring the body’s alignment and reducing inflammation via musculoskeletal, nervous and circulatory systems.

Follow Ups

The number of treatments needed usually depends on the duration and severity of the symptoms. Treatments are ideally spaced every 2-3 weeks to allow the body to integrate physiological changes. For acute conditions, 1-2 week intervals are ideal.


A consultation before conception makes sure the biomechanics of the body are ready for pregnancy. During pregnancy, regular checkups help one to better adapt to her changing body and gearing up for delivery. Treatments are crucial after birth
as pregnancy, labor and delivery often compress the base of the skull, the spine, the ribs and the pelvis. Realigning the body and bringing back mobility to joints and organs help prevent common issues such as back, hip and pelvic pain, urinary incontinence and organ prolapse.

Babies and Children

The best time for Osteopathy is within a few weeks after birth and any given time in childhood. The earlier the better. Problems can stem from birth but also from any subsequent injuries which can directly influence a child’s muscular, skeletal and neurological developments.

Children respond very well to osteopathic treatments as cranial bones and sutures progressively ossify and most of them don’t close until the age of 7 or 8. The sacrum and the most central cranial junction both close later at around 25 years of age. Throughout adulthood, bones remain resilient and flexible enough to permit considerable improvements to the craniosacral axis and rest of the body.

Osteopathic Techniques used at Advanced Health

1. Craniosacral Osteopathy

Craniosacral Osteopathy is a subtle hands-on approach that restores the movement of the cranial bones and the sacrum in order to achieve optimal mobility and function throughout the body. Julie can feel and restore the natural rhythm of the nervous system that is transferred to the skull, spine, sacrum and all other parts of the body. She does so by carefully releasing the cranial membranes and the fluid that surrounds, protects and nourishes the brain and spinal cord. She also releases restricted muscles, bones and nerves from the base of the skull down the spine and sacrum to relieve deep tension and pain caused by compressions along the way.

2. Visceral Manipulation

Visceral Manipulation is a gentle manual approach that focuses on restoring the mobility and function of the organs. Each organ has its own natural mobility around specific axes and planes of movement.

Organs move around and against ligaments, fasciae, muscles and other organs. Restrictions within these structures can cause organs to adhere to soft tissue, pull on the spine and other joints of the body and cause inflammation and pain. Such tensions often compromise the nervous and blood supply to the organs and alter their function.

Just as organs can send dysfunctional signals to the spine via the nervous system and cause body pain, restrictions within the musculoskeletal system may as well cause the organs to suffer. It is important to treat both the organs and their structural counterparts to make sure that the nervous system is balanced and functioning optimally.

3. Muscle Energy

Muscle Energy techniques use muscle contraction to relax and lengthen muscles and to normalize joint motion. Muscle Energy techniques are used to treat decreased range of motion, chronic muscle spasms and pain by repositioning dysfunctional facet joints in the neck and back as well as other joints in the body. Muscle Energy techniques can also prevent future injuries and help patients reach their full musculoskeletal potential.

4. Myofascial Release

Fasciae are made of connective tissue that surrounds, supports and protects the body’s muscles, bones, nerves and organs. Healthy fasciae is flexible, resilient and glides smoothly against its surrounding structures. Tight fasciae from overuse, poor
posture or stress, leads to friction and inflammation within the tissues.  Myofascial Release techniques relieve pain and restore range-of-motion by improving circulation and nerve transmission. They also play an important role in healing after injury or surgery.

Note From Your Osteopath Julie Duggan

Osteopathy is about going back to basics. We can thrive at all ages when we understand how the human body moves and functions and how we can support it with adequate postural and lifestyle adjustments. It is an honor for me to have the
opportunity to meet every single one of my patients and get to dig deeply into what health is and how the body is supposed to work. Because when you understand health, you can prevent disease.

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