Q&A with Mark MacKenzie

This interview with Mark MacKenzie was originally published in Golden This Week in March 2016.

Q. What services do you offer at Nourish Clinic?

A. I am a fully licensed Manual Osteopath, offering Manual Osteopathic Treatments.
    Manual osteopathy is a gentle, holistic system of health care that focuses on treatment of the body’s structure, in order to optimize functions. While Osteopathy is best known for pain relief from disorders such as low-back pain, neck pain, shoulder pains, headaches, sciatica, sporting injuries, etc., it also helps to optimize all of the body's systems ( including movement, digestion, sleep, and energy levels).
   Manual Osteopathy differentiates between symptoms (like pain) and the cause of those symptoms. For example, a pain in your shoulder may be due to a problem in the shoulder, in the back, or in the liver, or due to postural mis-alignment.

Q. How does Manual Osteopathy fit into a person's health care?

A. In North America, Osteopaths are fully licensed MDs who practice using Osteopathic principles and manual therapies, to provide a distinct form of primary health care. In the US, there are many Osteopaths, however there are not many Osteopaths in Canada.
   As a Manual Osteopath, I provide the manual therapy portion of an individual's treatment plan, which may, or may not, be determined by an MD.
   A few of the conditions where Manual Osteopathy integrates well with western medicine are: 

• Back and Joint Pains
• Headaches
• Digestive issues
• Arthritis pains
• Injuries
• Post-surgery / Post-hospitalization
• Post-casting

   While I take referrals, people can also self-refer. I work with each client, and will collaborate with their other health-care providers, to develop individualized, evidence-based care plans.

Q. Who is your typical client?

A. My typical clients are people with pain and/or limited motions, who are ready to make changes. Some of my clients have new pains for a variety of reasons, while others have chronic pain (in many cases for decades). Regardless of their condition, my clients are ready to regain control of their health and get back to the activities they enjoy.

Q. Why did you become a Manual Osteopath?

A. I had been plagued by low-back pain, digestive issues, and headaches for as long as I can remember. I had seen many MDs and therapists between by teens and early 30's, with some successes, but my symptoms always came back.
   In 2007 I was by far the worst I had ever been; I had to quit manual labor, was eventually given an MRI, and received a diagnosis. I declined a low-success surgery option and spent a few more years searching for answers.
   Eventually, a friend suggested I talk to Manual Osteopath, who ended up changing my life. They were the first therapist to see and understand all of my health problems as a whole, and showed me a path to taking back control of my body.
   After a few visits, I knew I had to share this amazing therapy with others, and enrolled to become a Manual Osteopath.

Q. Is there a phase or quote which inspires you?

A. “The Health in osteopathy is far more than the absence of symptoms or disease." from Dr. A.T. Still.
   To be healthy, all of your body's parts and systems need to be functioning properly. Blood needs to flow, joints need to move freely, organs need to do their jobs efficiently. This allows your body and mind to deal with all of life's demands and stresses. Simply having an absence of conscious symptoms or a labeled disease does not mean your body is able to do this.

Mark practices in Golden on Mondays and Tuesdays and sees patients by appointment only. For more information or to book an appointment, visit www.rmosteo.ca.