Alan Szmelskyj

DO, MSc, Adv Dip Clin Hyp, FRSPH

  • Registered Osteopath with over 30 years' experience
  • Registered Hypnotherapist (Medical Hypnosis)
  • International speaker and presenter
  • Author of many scientific publications
Photo of Alan Szmelskyj, Osteopath and Hypnotherapist

Profile

Diploma in Osteopathy, British School of Osteopathy, London, 1985.

Post-graduate accreditation in ergonomics, health and safety and manual handling, Loughborough University in 1992 and the Institute of Occupational Ergonomics at the University of Nottingham in 1999.

Master of Science degree in Psychobiology of Stress and Stress Management, University of Surrey, 2004.

Advanced Diploma in Clinical Hypnosis, Staffordshire University, 2011.

For several years Alan was an Editorial Board member of the British Osteopathic Journal, before becoming Chief Editor of The Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. He is a former Research Fellow of the British School of Osteopathy.

Alan has tutored, lectured, supervised and examined undergraduate osteopathic students at one third of the UK's osteopathic colleges, including The British School of Osteopathy, British College of Osteopathic Medicine and The College of Osteopaths. He has taught at post-graduate level nationally and internationally to osteopaths, medical doctors, consultants, physiotherapists, nurses and other healthcare professionals. He has presented at several international specialist conferences.

In the early 1990s, Alan worked for several years in the occupational health departments at Hinchingbrooke and Papworth NHS Trusts. This work involved providing a back pain prevention advisory service. He has also provided occupational musculo-skeletal and ergonomics advice and training to large companies such as DuPont and Tesco as well as local Huntingdonshire based companies, for example Sealed Air. Alan has also served as a Chairman of the Osteopathic Clinical Ergonomics Association, and for several years was a committee member of The General Council and Register of Osteopaths' public relations subcommittee.

Alan has been published in several peer reviewed scientific journals. These include publications on the osteopathic treatment of back and spinal pain, fibromyalgia, stress management, hypnosis and education. His most recent conference presentation was at the 2017 European Society of Hypnosis Congress. Alan is the only UK contributor of a specialist chapter on back pain management to a forthcoming book on chronic pain management edited by University of Washington Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine Mark P. Jensen.

Through articles in the local press Alan provided consumer guidance and health promotion advice on avoiding repetitive strain injury, poor sitting posture and on the osteopathic management of myalgic encephalomyelitis and improvement in NHS care of elderly patients.

Registered with The General Osteopathic Council (GOsC), the governing body for osteopathic practice and training in the UK. Alan is a member of the GOsC register and practices according to a strict code of practice as set out by the Council. He has full public liability insurance. Alan has an exemplary professional conduct and competence record.

A Member of The Institute of Osteopathy

A Member of The British Society of Clinical and Academic Hypnosis

A Fellow of The Royal Society for Public Health

A Member of The British Medical Acupuncture Society (BMAS)

By virtue of extensive post-graduate study, research and publications, Alan has specialist interest and knowledge in the treatment and management of the following health concerns:

• Back pain

• The interrelationship of the shoulder and neck in headache development and maintenance

• Reducing the effects of stress related disorders and relaxation enhancement,

• Holistic approaches to healthy ageing and wellbeing

• Optimising mind/ body health to enhance learning and cognitive potential across the generations

Alan has been married to Irina Szmelskyj for over 20 years and they have two sons. When not working, Alan enjoys swimming, table tennis and badminton. More leisurely pursuits include gardening, narrow boating and spending time with his family and two Burmese cats.

National and International Conference Presentations

August 2017 Speaker at XIV European Society of Hypnosis Congress Hilton Deansgate Hotel Manchester, UK. Topic “Improving The Efficacy Of Clinical Hypnosis For the Management Of Non-Specific Low Back Pain and Dysfunction”

November 2015 Speaker at Institute of Osteopathy Annual Convention Runnymede on Thames Hotel Egham, Surrey, UK Topic "Identification using a brief screening scale of the potential prevalence of depression in musculoskeletal patients presenting in osteopathic practice"

August 2015 Speaker at 23rd World Congress of Psychosomatic Medicine. Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre, Glasgow Topic “How much of what may at face value appear to be situational based placebo responses from manual intervention administered to patients with musculoskeletal pain is explainable?”

February 2008 Poster presentation. Advancing Osteopathy 2008 conference. The Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, Westminster, London. Topic “Stress and palliative stress management in fibromyalgia”.

May 1997 Speaker at 80th Anniversary seminar, British School of Osteopathy, London. Topic “Low back pain. Biomechanical or psycho-social”

March 1995 Speaker at Osteopathy 2000 conference, Commonwealth Institute, London. Topic "An osteopath’s involvement in the Occupational Health Department of two NHS Trust hospitals”

April 1994 Speaker at 9th Annual Residential Conference. International Association of Hypno- Analysts, Coventry Hill Hotel, Coventry. Topic “Osteopathy and hypnosis. Where do they overlap?"

November 1987 Speaker at the Research Council for Complementary Medicine Methodology Conference – How do we know it works?-Measures of outcome. British School of Osteopathy, London. Topic “Are you better? Clinical judgements of outcome and their implications. Osteopathy”.

Academic Publications

"50 ways to promote your practice" – A course evaluation. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education. 1994; 4(1): 7-13.

An investigation of GPs attitudes to and knowledge of osteopathy. AO Szmelskyj and J Morris. Complementary Medical Research. 1992; 6(3): 119-123.

A Pilot Study of the Value of Information Provision upon GPs knowledge of Osteopathy. AO Szmelskyj, J Morris. Journal of Osteopathic Education. 1992; 2(2): 81-85.

A retrospective survey of the predictive value of biorhythm theory in acute patients presenting in osteopathic practice. AO Szmelskyj. Complementary Medical Research. May 1990; 4(2): 35-38.

"Are you better?" Clinical judgements of outcome and their implications. Osteopathy. AO Szmelskyj. Complementary Medical Research 1988; 2(3): 36-42.

A study of GP to osteopath referral patterns: implications for inter-professional co-operation. AO Szmelskyj, S Mathews. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1996; 6(1): 14–23.

Avoiding a malpractice law suit: A brief review of the literature. AO Szmelskyj. British Osteopathic Journal. 1992; 9: 20-25.

Do complementary therapies stimulate the body’s natural painkilling medications? A literature review. AO Szmelskyj. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 1998; 6(1): 36-41.

Effectiveness of public speaking as a means of educating the public about osteopathy. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education. 3(3): 1993; 151–153.

Exercising for a healthy life. What should osteopaths be advising their patients? AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1996; 6(2): 49.

Holistic Osteopathic Practice and manipulation. Is there a difference? AO Szmelskyj. The Newsletter of the East Anglia branch of the Royal College of General Practitioners. (Winter 1991/2); 10-12.

How can we educate and inform our patients about what is wrong with them? AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1996; 6(2): 51.

Improving clinical outcomes in osteopathically managed fibromyalgia syndrome. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1998; 8(1): 1-4.

Introducing osteopathy to trainee GPs: an evaluation of a course framework. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education. 1994; 4(2): 70-74.

Managing patients who fail to keep their appointments. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1998; 8(1): 33-38.

Osteopathy and low back pain. AO Szmelskyj. Imaging. 1995; 7: 234-238.

Persistent back pain. D Peters, A Lyster, AO Szmelskyj, J Campbell. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 1995; Vol. 3 (4): 224-229.

Poor uptake of clinical guidelines and research in clinical practice. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1996; 6(1): 4.

Psycho-social and hypnotic theories of osteopathy and therapeutic applications. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1997; 7(1): 32–40.

Reassessing the role of the marketing and advertising of osteopathy: a need to educate the public about osteopathy. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education. 1993; 3(1): 5-8.

Sleep Quality, Musculoskeletal Pain and Perceived Stress In Osteopathic Patients. AO Szmelskyj. MSc Dissertation. September 2004. University of Surrey.

Ten years on: Chernobyl’s healthcare legacy – an opportunity for osteopaths to help. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1996; 6(1): 1-3.

The Difference Between Holistic Osteopathic Practice and Manipulation. AO Szmelskyj. Holistic Medicine. (1990); 5, 67-79.

The efficacy of spinal fusion and its role in adjacent spinal motion segment breakdown. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1996; 6(2): 50-51.

The qualifications and geographical distribution of practising osteopaths in England, Scotland and Wales. AO Szmelskyj. Complementary Medical Research. 1992; 6(1): 1-8.

To wear a white coat or not? AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1997; 7(1): 5.

Who do osteopaths consult when they have back or neck pain. AO Szmelskyj. Journal of Osteopathic Education and Clinical Practice. 1997; 7(2): 100 – 104.

Letters To The Editor and Book Reviews

Can we afford this saving? AO Szmelskyj. Huntingdon & St Ives & St Neots News & Crier. Letter to the Editor. (6th January 2011); 6.

Osteopathic treatment of menstrual back pain. AO Szmelskyj. Complementary Therapies in Medicine. Letter to the Editor. (1994); 2: 51.

Palpation Skills– by Leon Chaitow. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, Book review. AO Szmelskyj. (June 1997); 126-127.

Rheumatology symposium. AO Szmelskyj. The Practitioner Letter to the Editor. (1993); 237: 90.

Simple ways to avoid RSI. AO Szmelskyj. Hunts Herald and Post. Letter to the Editor. (24th February 1994); 4.

Sit Up Straight. AO Szmelskyj. The Hunts Post. (24th September 2003); 6.

The bodyclock diet, by Robert Harley. The International Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, Book review. AO Szmelskyj. (February 1992).

Well done for focusing on M.E. AO Szmelskyj. Hunts Herald and Post. Letter to the Editor. (27th May 1998); 27.

What about alternative health care? AO Szmelskyj. Hunts Citizen. Letter to the Editor. (9th April 1992); 4.

Where will patients go? AO Szmelskyj. Huntingdon & St Ives & St Neots News & Crier. Letter to the Editor. (23rd December 2010); 6.

Whiplash return. AO Szmelskyj. Natural Health. (July 2011): 80-81.

Should we abandon cervical spine manipulations for mechanical neck pain? Yes. Alan Szmelskyj. BMJ. (June 2012), 344:e3679 doi: org/10.1136/bmj.e3679

What Our Patients Say

In almost 50 years of combined experience, we are proud to have received hundreds of patients' positive feedback messages. Below is a small selection of some of them.

"I haven’t had to see Alan for 6 years but when I pulled my back this weekend he was the first person I thought of to help. Just got home after half an hour appointment and feels so much better already. I would highly recommend him to anyone!! Thank you."

"I visited Alan to get a second opinion on the condition of my spine. I was already visiting a sports therapist which did not seem to be giving me the results that I felt I needed. After the most thorough examination that I have ever undergone he passed on the most informative feedback I that I have ever received. I was so impressed with the conscientious, meticulous yet calm manner in which the examination took place. I would highly recommend him."

"Alan has such a kind and warm attitude, he immediately put me at my ease. After only a couple of appointments, I already feel much better. An excellent osteopath whom I would have no hesitation in recommending.
Thank you."

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