Shaftesbury Podiatry & Chiropody Practice

Miles Cowan Bsc (Hons) Ost Bsc (Hons) Pod MChS Dip FTST

State registered  Podiatrist & Chiropodist

 
Podiatry & physical therapy in Shaftesbury, North Dorset:

Hi, welcome to my website.  My clinic is located on the outskirts of Shaftesbury on the Wincombe Business Park. I treat people of all ages and stages of life, mainly from around Shaftesbury, Gillingham, Mere and the surrounding areas of North Dorset and the Wiltshire border.

I am a podiatrist & chiropodist & I have statutory registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). I am also dual qualified and I have degrees in podiatry and osteopathy, plus I also have a diploma in fitness training and sports therapy.

I was for many years, previously registered with the General Osteopathic Council (GOSC) but I recently decided to voluntarily come off the register. I did this partly because I was incurring unnecessary expenses paying for two lots of registration fees, costing over £1000 per year. I also came to the conclusion that their where no benefits to being registered, both for myself and also for my patients.

This now means that although I have a degree in osteopathy, I am no longer legally allowed to use the title, ‘Osteopath.’ So this now means I am continuing to practice, using all the same skills and experience that I have developed over many years but I am now  a non- registered osteopath, using the title, ‘Physical therapist/ Bodyworker.’

My skills and clinical experience has been developed over the past 20 years, working both in private practice and in the NHS. I provide a broad range of treatments to help patients with common foot complaints and I also treat people suffering from musculoskeletal problems affecting other parts of the body, including back and neck pain,  shoulder and knee injuries.

I understand that when you are in pain, or you have any kind of problem that is effecting your body, you want to get it seen to quickly. I do therefore, make every effort to see you as soon as possible, to help resolve the problem swiftly.

Appointments:

There is an easy online booking system, where you can make an appointment at your convenience (see link at top of page). If you are unable to find a date and time that suits, please call me or send me an email. I will get back to you asap, to try and offer you a time that fits in better with your schedule. I can arrange later appointments for anyone who is unable to come between the hours of 9am- 5pm, due to work. I also offer a home visiting service.

Please note, that I will likely be treating patients during the day, so I may well not answer your call if you phone me. Please leave a message on my voicemail and I will phone you back.

 

 

shaftesbury-osteopathy

available treatments

How can Miles help you?

Podiatry & Chiropody:

There is a professional chiropody surgery in the practice, with all the latest technology and equipment, which I use to diagnose and treat a broad range of conditions effecting the feet. Here is a quick summary of the kind of treatments that I provide:

  • I carry out routine foot care such as nail cutting, corn, hard skin (callus) removal and treatment for cracked (fissured) heels.
  • I can help with painful ingrowing toenails, which can be treated under local anaesthesia, using minor surgical procedures, know as a partial nail avulsion or a total nail ablation.
  • I treat stubborn fungal nail infections through a highly effective method that get’s right to the source of the problem.
  •  I use a number of methods, including laser therapy, to initiate an immune response, that attacks the viral infection that causes verruca’s. 

 

  • I provide diabetic foot care, including treatment of plantar ulceration and diagnostic testing for neuropathy and circulatory issues associated with diabetes mellitus.
  • I offer expert advise and treatment for people suffering from heel pain and use shockwave therapy, tool assisted massage and foot manipulation to treat this condition.
  • I prescribe special insoles (orthotics) that provide support to the feet and help to make walking more comfortable.
  • I carry out in depth assessments or biomechanical analysis to diagnose the underlying causes of foot problems and dysfunction of the lower limb and the body as a whole.

Biomechanics & Gait Analysis:

Biomechanics is concerned with the study of the structure, function and motion of the mechanical aspects of biological systems. In podiatric medicine, biomechanics is a specialised field that is used to analyse the way in which the muscles, bones and joints of the feet and lower limb interact and move.  It is also used as a way to diagnose and treat disorders of the lower limb by providing an insight into the underlying causes of injury and the predisposing factors that occur due to faulty patterns of gait.

A biomechanical assessment involves looking at the body as a whole. This would include an examination of posture and the spinal column.

 

 

Bodywork & Physical therapy clinic:

The other main function of the clinic is to provide treatment for patients who are experiencing pain in other parts of the body, as well as the feet. This covers a wide spectrum of musculoskeletal (MSK) problems, including treatment for all common aches and pains, effecting the soft tissues of the body. These are all the muscles, the fascia, tendons, ligaments and joints that connect & make up the bodies integral structure. I work with is a gentle ‘hands on’ approach, that views the patient from a holistic perspective, treating the body as a whole and not just a collection of isolated parts.

Here is a brief summary of some of the types of problems I can help with:

  • Lower back pain
  • Neck pain 
  • Sciatica and trapped nerves
  • Headaches & migraines
  • Peripheral joint problems, such as shoulder, elbow, hip & knee pain
  • Sports injuries
  • Pulled muscles, tendons and ligaments

 

 

I also use dry needling and laser acupuncture, to help resolve pain and tension in the muscles and connective tissues of the body. This is very effective in targeting specific areas in muscles that can develop acutely tender, taut bands of fibrotic tissue, otherwise known as ‘trigger points.’

 

Tool Assisted Massage

Another method I use to treat tight muscles is called ‘Tool Assisted Massage.’ These instruments are great for ironing out knots in muscles and for breaking down adhesions within fascia and other connective tissues. The tools act as useful diagnostic devices, similar in some ways to the needle on a record player, as they magnify the feeling of tension  and drag from the underlying tissues.

Connective tissues

Patients often complain of  ‘knots’ in the muscle (Trapezius) that sits over the back of the shoulders and in between the shoulder blades (scapulae). This is an area of the body that is prone to ‘postural strain,’ due to sitting at a desk for long periods, with hunched up, rounded shoulders. This can lead to areas of increased muscle tone (hypertonicity) in the Trapezius, with very tender trigger points or knotted areas in the surrounding soft tissues structures. The cause of this problem is often the myofascial (connective) tissues and what is know as the muscular tendinous junction, of the Levator Scapulae muscle, which inserts onto the top of the shoulder blade. Tension in this muscle can also be the cause of some headaches, as it can pull down on the neck and the scull (occiput), where it attaches further up at the top of the vertebral column. This can compress and irritate the upper cervical nerve roots, causing referred pains to manifest around the eye and the cranial (head) bones.

The fascia is connective tissue that runs throughout the body, a bit like a spiders web. It is a continuum of every structure within the body and envelopes muscles, bones and organs. When we think of the body, we tend to think of separate structures, such as bone, muscles or tendons but in reality it is all one interconnected structure and the fascia is the connecting tissue that binds and holds it all together. The network of myofascial tissues provide form to the whole body &  it is an excellent example of the concept of ‘the body as one unit.’

Fascia: The Extracellular Matrix, forms a continuity between every cell and every tissue in the body. It is the framework that acts like a tensegrity structure , which is under continuous tension and opposing compression at the same time.

 

Specific exercises can also be prescribed to help manage chronic back pain, to improve range of motion in the joints and to maintain flexibility throughout the body. However, very often the best medicine is rest, to allow the body to repair and clean. Most of us spend to much time rushing around, stressed out and with busy lives; the ‘fight or flight’ response is switched permanently on, with the Sympathetic nervous system on maximum overdrive. The stress hormone, Cortisol, which is realised from the top of the kidney, has the negative effect of suppressing vital functions such  as cleaning and repair. So in fact exercise can be detrimental to recovery and that is why it may well be best to rest…, something that busy people often struggle with!

 

  • High standards of hygiene are maintained within the clinic, in accord with official guidelines. All chiropody instruments are professionally cleaned in an ultrasonic bath, using a chemical cleaner that removes all particulate’s and residues, to clean down to the molecular level. The instruments are then vacuum packed into individual sterile pouches,  placed in an autoclave and steam cleaned at a high temperature to kill off any pathogens and virus’s.

  • Surfaces, such as door handles, treatment couches, tables and floors are cleaned with detergent in between patient visits, to maintain health and safety standards and to minimize risk of cross contamination with Corona virus.

  • Medical grade PPE is worn to protect patients and practitioners.

Make a Booking

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Where to find me

Shaftesbury, North Dorset

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