Understanding fibroblasts in order to comprehend the osteopathic treatment of the fascia

Bruno Bordoni, Emiliano Zanier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The osteopathic treatment of the fascia involves several techniques, each aimed at allowing the various layers of the connective system to slide over each other, improving the responses of the afferents in case of dysfunction. However, before becoming acquainted with a method, one must be aware of the structure and function of the tissue that needs treating, in order to not only better understand the manual approach, but also make a more conscious choice of the therapeutic technique to employ, in order to adjust the treatment to the specific needs of the patient. This paper examines the current literature regarding the function and structure of the fascial system and its foundation, that is, the fibroblasts. These connective cells have many properties, including the ability to contract and to communicate with one another. They play a key role in the transmission of the tension produced by the muscles and in the management of the interstitial fluids. They are a source of nociceptive and proprioceptive information as well, which is useful for proper functioning of the body system. Therefore, the fibroblasts are an invaluable instrument, essential to the understanding of the therapeutic effects of osteopathic treatment. Scientific research should make greater efforts to better understand their functioning and relationships.

Original languageEnglish
Article number860934
JournalEvidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Complementary and alternative medicine


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