Some doctors have MDs after their names, others have DO. Like MDs, DOs are fully licensed physicians trained to diagnose, treat and prevent illnesses and medical conditions. Keep reading to learn about the similarities and differences between a doctor of osteopathic medicine (DO) and a medical doctor (MD).

What is an osteopathic doctor (DO)?

Like MDs, DOs go to medical school, where they spend several years learning how to care for patients of all backgrounds and ages. Osteopathic medicine is dedicated to treating and healing patients as a whole, rather than focusing on one specific condition or body part. As part of their medical training, DOs learn to look beyond your symptoms to see how your lifestyle (i.e., diet, physical activity, emotions, stress levels, etc.) impacts your health and well-being.

DOs have extra education, usually about 200 hours, to learn osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM). It is also called osteopathic manipulative technique (OMT). DOs learn how bones, nerves, and muscles work together and influence people’s health. OMM focuses on methods to relieve back pain, neck pain, strained muscles, and other conditions.

DOs practice in all medical specialties, including family medicine, pediatrics, OB/GYN, surgery, and many more. After graduating from medical school, they train in the same internship/residency specialty programs as their MD colleagues. They take the same exams to quality to practice medicine. 

DOs are fully trained and licensed doctors

Both DOs and MDs are equally qualified to diagnose, treat, and prescribe medication. As a matter of fact, other than having different letters in their name tags, most people can’t tell the difference between an MD and a DO when receiving care. 

Vecino Health Centers’ doctors, whether DO or MD, are dedicated to your and your family’s good health. Our doctors provide care to patients of all ages, including infants, toddlers, children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly. Some of the services they provide include diagnosing and treating illnesses and injuries, health screenings and tests, immunizations, prenatal and postnatal care, and helping your with lifestyle changes to prevent health conditions before they develop.