Visceral Osteopathy looks at how well the organs of the body are doing. There are several important issues which visceral osteopathy addresses. It is best described like this. For all intents and purposes our organs are structurally like sponges. They are designed to absorb via its blood supply oxygen, nutrients and other chemical elements (e.g., hormones, calcium etc,). Then excrete via the blood supply, lymphatic supply or urinary system, carbon dioxide, waste products and other chemical elements again. Without going into the biochemical causes of organ dysfunction, and putting it simply, there are 4 main ways in which the function of an organ can be impaired or dysregulated and they are as follows:
- Tension: Lets go back to our image of a sponge. If you take sponge hold it in position and then pull it. Now the ability of the sponge to absorb fluid is reduced as it is under strain. This is how the musculoskeletal framework of our body to which the organs are attached can affect our organs where there is too much tension. Similarly, lets image that there are little internal strings radiating from the centre of the sponge to its outer edges in all directions. Now, image at the centre of the sponge these strings attached to a little winch and that winch starts winding in the strings. The sponge will compress. Again, the ability of the sponge to absorb fluids will be reduced. This type of compression can happen for several reasons, e.g., disease, injury, surgery, overstimulation, under stimulation.
- Blood Supply (in and out): If the blood supply in or out of the organ is compromised for any reason then the organ will not be able to perform its function properly.
- Nerve Stimulation: If an organ is overstimulated or under stimulated it will not perform its function correctly and the effects of this will be felt all over the body.
- Lymphatic Drainage: The function of the lymphatic system is to carry away harmful waste products from the tissues of the body.