Mai Samih finds out how osteopathy was introduced into Egypt

Before the existence of modern medicine, people would often go to a megabarati, a traditional medical practitioner, to cure ailments such as back and neck pain. Later, there came chiropractors, healthcare professionals focused on the diagnosis and treatment of neuromuscular disorders, and orthopaedists, specialists in correcting deformities of the skeletal system.

Physiotherapists also help people with disabilities recover since they have special training in helping patients with exercise, physical rehabilitation, and therapeutic methods of treating the musculoskeletal system.

However, recently a new form of medical practice has been introduced into Egypt, although it is already well known abroad, in the shape of osteopathy. Egyptian osteopath Hesham Khalil gave more details about this modern approach to physical health and how he became acquainted with it.

“In the early 1990s I was living and working as a physiotherapist in the United States. Unfortunately, I had several car accidents after which I developed what is called a cluster headache, a severe headache causing severe pain in the head and neck and limiting the ability to see, hear, and move. I went through every possible medical diagnosis in the US, and all of them proved that I was fine and had no good reason to have this pain. But by that point I was on five types of medicine, and the headache was progressive and disabling,” Khalil said.

“One of my friends then contacted me advising osteopathy. I did not know what it was, so I decided to visit an osteopath for treatment. After just three sessions I was finally cured after five years of suffering. Afterwards I was interested to study osteopathy, as I had to stop and think about how this could happen.” It was this personal experience that caused Khalil to study and later practice osteopathy.

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