Your musculoskeletal system is your biomechanical system. Your structural system is your unique architectural system. I’ve named this the Structural Fingerprint®.
Because everyone is born with a unique DNA pattern, and no two people walk the same path in life, it’s easy to imagine that we all have unique biomechanical structures. In addition to our unique genetic make-up, we also have unique injuries, habits, conditioning (or lack thereof), diet, weight, and height. We wear different kinds of shoes, and even the mattresses we sleep on are different, plus there are many other activities and contributing factors that combine to build our unique Structural Fingerprint®.
Orthodontists realized many years ago the detrimental effects of misalignment in the teeth. They’ve educated us over the years, and now it’s standard to have an orthodontist evaluate children’s teeth at a certain age to identify misalignments and make corrective recommendations.
Now let’s take a look at the human nervous system, skeletal system, and muscular system, all of which intertwine to form an architectural network known as the human body. It’s very much like a building with its architecture and electrical and plumbing systems. We like to assume there are no imbalances, misalignments, interferences, weaknesses, or fixations in our bodies, but this is only an assumption, because nowhere in our healthcare delivery system does any profession look at our structure as a whole and identify structural problems as the orthodontists identify misalignments of the teeth.
The medical community is too ignorant of biomechanics to examine the biomechanics of the human body. Osteopaths have more education in biomechanics than medical doctors (M.D.s), but our current medical educational system encourages osteopaths to adhere to the standard (AMA) medical model, which is to wait for symptoms to arise, then treat only the symptoms. Chiropractors receive the most biomechanical education, yet there is also a contingent in this profession fighting to make the standard medical model the gold standard of care.
Physical therapists are great candidates to use the biomechanical model of care, but they don’t take x-rays and the x-ray provides at least 60 percent of the information gained in the Structural Fingerprint® exam. Physical therapists are also guided by insurance coverage, which provides only minimal care. Long-term correction has never been part of their vocabulary.
In the end, we have to hope that members of all the healthcare professions will see the need for and be willing to learn the inner workings of human biomechanics and to address this global issue. At the very least, if all people (with or without symptoms) were required to undergo the Structural Fingerprint® exam at some point in their lives, this would be a useful start to fixing the neglected musculoskeletal system. At least those who want to work on correcting problems found on the exam would have the opportunity to do so.