Osteopathic Physician (D.O.)


A doctor of osteopathic medicine is a physician licensed to practice medicine, perform surgery, and prescribe medication for any injuries.

Duties of this Career

  • Practice medicine
  • Perform surgery
  • Prescribe medication
  • Care and better the health of their patients

Employment Trends

D.O.'s can practice in ranges of medicine from emergency medicine to cardiovascular surgery to psychiatry and geriatrics. More than 6.5% (70,000+) of total U.S. physician population.

Personality Qualifications

  • Good with people
  • Compassionate
  • Caring

Education Needed

  • 4 years of medical school (post Under-Grad)
  • 200-300 Residential hours
  • Certification with the American Osteopathic Association (A.O.A.)

Two Schools of Specialization

  • Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine
  • Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine (Virginia Campus)


  • Beginning Salary - Around 150K
  • Average Salary - Around 200K
  • Exceptional Salary - Around 250K

Example of Injury Treated by D.O.

Dislocated Shoulder

Cause of Injury: Direct blow or fall on a outstretched arm

Description of Injury: When the head of the humerus (upper arm bone) pops out of the shallow shoulder socket of the scapula (glenoid cavity)

Signs and Symptoms: Significant pain, inability to move arm, numbness of the arm, visibly displaced shoulder, pop sound (only sometimes reported)

Role of the Specialist: Refer the patient to a Physical Therapist o restrengthen their shoulder muscles (assuming their shoulder has been put back in place at the scene of the injury and they don't need surgery)

Personal Reflection

I would not be interested in making this my career objective because I'm not all that interested in learning the surgery aspect and it seems no different from an ordinary physician besides being specialized in treating athletes who participate in sports.


"American Osteopathic Association." American Osteopathic Association. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Sept. 2013.

"What Is Osteopathic Medicine? ." What Is Osteopathic Medicine? N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Sept. 2013.