Osteopathic physicians practice the full range of modern medicine with a patient-centered focus on holistic treatment. More than 20 percent of medical students in the United States are training to be osteopathic physicians, and DOs consist of 7 percent of all U.S. physicians. Osteopathic physicians can choose any specialty, prescribe drugs, perform surgeries and practice medicine anywhere in the United States.
Learn more about Osteopathic Medicine from the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine.
What makes an DO degree different from an MD?
Osteopathic medicine adds the benefit of hands-on diagnosis and treatment, emphasizing health promotion and disease prevention. It was developed to promote the body’s innate ability to heal itself.
DOs are similar to MDs (allopathic medicine practitioners) in that they can prescribe drugs, choose any specialty, perform surgeries and practice medicine anywhere in the U.S. Like MDs, DOs must pass a national or state medical board examination in order to obtain a license to practice medicine.
Because of their focus on the whole body, spirit and mind, the majority of osteopathic medical school graduates choose careers in primary care.