Osteopathic manipulative treatment in pregnant women

J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2012 Jun;112(6):343-6. doi: 10.7556/jaoa.2012.112.6.343.


Pregnant women experience extensive physiologic and structural changes during pregnancy that affect their daily functioning. The addition of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) to the standard care of pregnant women has been hypothesized to enhance homeostasis and improve quality of life as the body adapts to these changes. Specifically, it has been postulated that OMT can ease pain in pregnant women by eliminating somatic dysfunction and maintaining proper structure. Also, through the viscerosomatic connection, the hemodynamic changes of the maternal body can be controlled, the duration of labor reduced, and the complications of labor avoided. The author reviews the available literature on the use and effectiveness of OMT during pregnancy.

MeSH terms

  • Back Pain / prevention & control
  • Diaphragm / pathology
  • Female
  • Hemodynamics
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Kyphosis / prevention & control
  • Manipulation, Osteopathic / methods*
  • Maternal Welfare*
  • Perinatal Care / methods*
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / prevention & control
  • Quality of Life / psychology