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‘It's our level of care that sets us apart’ - Lisa Thomson, Senior Partner
Click on the links below to learn about the CSSM team.
Travis is an Osteopath and the founder of CSSM.
Coming from a family of bean counters, Travis says he chose health as a career because he didn’t want to become an accountant. “The irony now is that as practice principal at CSSM I do spend a lot of time looking at spreadsheets. So maybe I was trying to avoid the inevitable!”
Travis chose osteopathy because he has always liked the hands-on approach to treatment. “That, together with the high level of study and knowledge in areas such as anatomy and movement, which is inherent within the osteopathy program, really excited me. I had already done four years of study in health before commencing osteopathy and I had the opportunity to do other things. But I chose to pursue osteopathy, and another five years of study because of the ability of the skills I learnt to help people in a meaningful way.”
Travis enjoys treating most injuries of the “active” person. “One of the biggest areas of interest is treating teenagers. There is a perception that kids and teenagers are just little adults – this is a massive misconception. Growing athletes have a unique set of needs. We are seeing a lot of kids and teens suffering significant injuries from a young age.” Recent studies have shown that in Australia, the highest increase in knee reconstruction surgery has occurred in teenagers between the ages of 12 and 16. “The impact of that on their future is scary.”
After working at a few other clinics, Travis found that health care suffered from a lack of direction and, CSSM was born. “Osteopathy was a relatively small profession with just a few hundred of us in Australia. I saw the opportunity to bring osteo to the masses.”
Ever since, Travis has been keen to make osteopathy accessible as a health service that can deliver a patient focussed approach to care, giving meaningful evidence-based treatment and management to patients.
“We started as a one man show, and have grown to a team of over 20. As part of this growth and expansion we have added a team of other modalities such as physio, podiatry, myotherapy and Pilates to the clinic – a ‘one stop shop” for the management of musculoskeletal injury.”
Travis describes CSSM as an extension of his family. “I am just as passionate about our team and the people that we treat as I am about few other things. Doing what we do and doing it well is my biggest objective.”
The CSSM philosophy is to provide a level of care that exceeds the norm and ensures the best outcome for patients. “Our standard appointment is what most other clinics call an extended appointment. It is a source of amusement to us when we see other clinics promote their guarantees of extended care. From our perspective, you do not need to guarantee it, if it is what is ingrained in you.”
Just as families continue to grow, Travis hopes CSSM will too and continue to serve the community. “As a larger clinic, we are able to offer more specialised services to our patients, such as our running gait analysis and pre-pointe assessments. We hope to continue to grow this suite of programs (golfers and cyclists stay tuned). From there, we also hope to spread our reach to other locations when the opportunity presents itself.”
When he’s not bossing everyone around, Travis looks forward to catching up on some much needed sleep. “CSSM is all-consuming but nothing is more important than watching my kids do their thing and celebrating their achievements. If I get the time, I do enjoy hitting the trails with some mountain biking and trail running through the Dandenong’s. I love the solitude of being out there working up a sweat, lost in my own thoughts.”
As a child, Lachlan was injury prone and saw many osteopaths and physiotherapists which sparked his interest in the industry.
“Osteopathy allows me to share knowledge about the body so people can understand themselves better.”
Lachlan has a particular interest in the neck and back and a growing interest in sport-related injuries. “I have grown up playing and watching sport my whole life. I feel as though I can identify with people who have sports injuries as I have had quite a few myself. Injuries can present significantly different from patient to patient which require lots of problem solving.”
In addition to manual therapy, Lachlan incorporates exercises as well as postural and lifestyle advice into his treatment sessions.
Lachlan has previously worked in London and learnt how osteopathy can be provided in a number of settings including hospitals, private practice, children’s clinics and expectant mothers clinics.
In the future, he would like to specialise in sports injuries and increase awareness and access to health care.
“CSSM is a one-stop musculoskeletal shop for people of all ages, backgrounds and injuries with a personalised and patient-focussed approach.”
Away from the clinic, Lachlan enjoys watching and playing sport, keeping fit and healthy, spending time with family and friends and exploring the world.
Emily has always been interested in the human body and leading an active lifestyle. “In learning about the different types of manual therapy, I really liked the concept of treating the person as a whole through osteopathy and aiming to solve the cause of someone’s pain or problem rather than just offering short term, symptomatic relief.”
Patient education and advice, in addition to hands-on treatment, is key to Emily’s treatment approach.
Emily is particularly interested in treating headaches/migraines, neck pain and pre/post-natal care using dry needling, Pilates and pain management strategies.
“Headaches including migraines are such a common and often debilitating condition and I’ve always found treating these conditions particularly satisfying as patients have often tried many different approaches with limited success prior to seeing an osteopath. I find the holistic and multi-faceted approach of osteopathy really well suited to treating these complaints.”
Emily has undertaken extensive training in dry needling. “I find it to be a very effective technique particularly for more complex cases and when other treatment modalities have been unsuccessful. I use this in conjunction with other forms of manual therapy as part of a treatment and very rarely in isolation.”
Since becoming a mother, Emily’s interest in pre and post-natal care has increased. “I understand the importance of not just pain relief during pregnancy but in optimising health and wellbeing during pregnancy for the best chance of an optimal birth and recovery.”
Having worked alongside experienced practitioners of many modalities, Emily has a broad understanding of the limitations of manual therapy and when referral and co-management may be necessary in order to achieve the best patient outcomes. In addition to manual therapy, Emily incorporates exercise prescription, postural and lifestyle advice into her management strategies, having undertaken further studies in Clinical Pilates and Nutritional Medicine.
In the future, Emily hopes to undertake further study in pain management strategies. “There’s growing numbers of patients dealing with persistent pain. These complaints form a significant part of our patient load and it is an area of research that I believe warrants further understanding.”
Away from CSSM, Emily enjoys being outdoors, spending time with her young family, drinking coffee and most recently, baking cakes!
Alice initially studied nursing before her interests diverted to Osteopathy. “I quickly realised that nursing wasn’t for me, but I enjoyed healthcare. I did a bit of investigating and found that osteopathy gave me the opportunity to work autonomously, stay in health care and chat all day!”
Studying, performing and competing as a ballet dancer from a very early age has given Alice a unique perspective and keen interest in dance and other sports related injuries and rehabilitation.
“I have a strong interest in Women’s Health particularly pregnancy and post-partum related back and pelvic pain which formed the focus of my Master’s Project. The management of headaches is something that I also have a keen interest in, it can be life changing to get headaches under control.”
Away from CSSM, Alice sits on the Occupational Health leadership committee for Osteopathy Australia. “I feel that I’m doing my part to promote Osteopathy in Australia, and to develop the profession moving forwards. My hope for Osteopaths is that there will be a broad range of job prospects and that the community will see more osteopaths outside of private practice such as in sporting clubs, hospitals and workplaces. It’s a fabulous profession. Watch this space!”
Being an osteopath combines Caroline’s love of health and helping people.
“Osteopathy was a way in which I could combine my desire to help people and study human anatomy, physiology, pathology and biomechanics. I was especially drawn to osteopathy given the widespread application of treatments for all age groups and focusing on finding the root cause of someone’s pain rather than just treating the symptomatic area.”
Caroline particularly enjoys treating headaches and neck pain. “There are so many factors that contribute to headaches which makes the process of diagnosing, treating and managing them quite a challenge. Utilising a wide range of techniques such as soft tissue massage, joint articulation and joint manipulation, it’s always rewarding to see a change in these headaches knowing that you have made a difference to someone’s everyday life.”
Lower back and pelvic pain for patients going through pregnancy, in desk workers and trades people are also areas of interest. “In the future I would like to expand further development into complex pain conditions to better understand those living with chronic health conditions and the way it impacts musculoskeletal pain.”
Caroline also appreciates the influence of other lifestyle and environmental factors that can contribute to pain or discomfort. She utilises a team approach working alongside her patients to establish short and long-term goals both in and out of the treatment room.
The variation in presenting injuries from acute to chronic, from athletes to desk workers, means that no two days as a practitioner are the same.
On her days off, Caroline enjoys going for day hikes (a favourite being the You Yangs), playing mixed netball, cooking and spending time with friends and family.