A further area of manipulative effort is the use of cranial technique. This will be considered more closely in Chapter 11, but it is worth mentioning, in passing, that there does exist this specialized form of treatment which incorporates the cranial structures into the overall consideration of body mechanics. Cranial osteopathy attempts to normalize the bones of the head as well as influencing the circulation and fluid movements (cerebro-spinal fluid etc.) to, from and within the cranium. It attempts to balance what is known as the cranio-sacral mechanism. What this is and what its effects are will be dealt with in the appropriate chapter. The cranial concept and the techniques employed in correcting dysfunction in this area, have opened new vistas to the osteopathic profession. Birth injuries and many previously untreatable conditions have responded to cranial methods.
All osteopathic manipulation is aimed at accomplishing specific ends. Not only must the physiology of the area being treated be understood but the overall inter-relationship between it and the body as a whole needs to be considered. At the same time the manipulative techniques being employed must take into account the individual needs of the patient. When selecting the appropriate technique the practitioner visualizes the desired end result and the way in which this is most likely to be achieved. The choice will differ from patient to patient, and even in the same patient, from one visit to another.
The oldest maxim in osteopathy is 'Find it, fix it, and leave it alone'. These are golden words.