Red X iconGreen tick iconYellow tick icon

Study Musculoskeletal Medicine at Otago

Musculoskeletal medicine deals with patients who have musculoskeletal and neural dysfunction of both an acute and chronic nature.

Patients with these problems constitute up to 20 per cent of a general practitioner’s caseload, and those with back and neck pain, in particular, impose a heavy economic and social burden on the community.

Musculoskeletal medicine is based on biomedical and psychosocial knowledge, and utilises a range of skills. These include appropriate history taking and physical examination, the use of pharmacotherapy, diagnostic and therapeutic interventional techniques, and applied biomechanics, as well as manual medicine, myofascial and needling skills. Psychosocial management and the use of appropriate referral is emphasised.

This programme is the only one of its kind in Australia and New Zealand.

Ready to enrol?

Get Started

Musculoskeletal Medicine at Otago

Who is it intended for?

The postgraduate musculoskeletal medicine qualifications are aimed at registered medical practitioners in both primary and allied musculoskeletal specialties, such as rheumatology, orthopaedic surgery and sports medicine.

Current medical registration is an admission requirement, and students must be registered as medical practitioners in the country in which the programme is taught.

Where will it take me?

Graduates of the Musculoskeletal Medicine qualifications have gone on to:

  • Assume clinical leadership and clinical specialist positions
  • Undertake specialist advisory and health management roles
  • Successfully gain funding for service initiatives
  • Become skilful consumers of clinical research
  • Complete diplomas, master's and PhDs in rehabilitation


Postgraduate Certificate in Musculoskeletal Medicine ( PGCertMSM )

What does it involve?

The Postgraduate Certificate in Musculoskeletal Medicine aims to provide a combination of musculoskeletal theory and principles integrated into clinical practice, for medical practitioners wanting to extend their knowledge and skills at a postgraduate level. Clinicians who complete the programme will have gained a clear understanding of musculoskeletal diagnosis and intervention, an ability to analyse information critically and will have demonstrated how to integrate that information and skill into their practice.

How long will it take?

The Postgraduate Certificate in Musculoskeletal Medicine can be completed by studying part-time over a one-to-three year timeframe.

Requirements for the Postgraduate Certificate in Musculoskeletal Medicine ( PGCertMSM )

Postgraduate Diploma in Musculoskeletal Medicine ( PGDipMSM )

What does it involve?

The diploma combines clinical and academic material from a biopsychosocial perspective, making this course unique. Musculoskeletal medicine aims to integrate the biomedical and psychosocial knowledge and skills pertinent to the treatment of those patients experiencing musculoskeletal pain problems.

How long will it take?

The Postgraduate Diploma in Musculoskeletal Medicine can be studied part-time over a two-to-four year time frame. Extensions of time to complete the course may be granted when there are exceptional circumstances.

Requirements for the Postgraduate Diploma in Musculoskeletal Medicine ( PGDipMSM )

Musculoskeletal Management

See also qualifications in Musculoskeletal Management

What do our recent students say?

“As a GP in a regional emergency department I saw a variety of musculoskeletal cases comingthrough the doors, and I wanted to improve my skills and knowledge in the management of these patients. I've always wanted to re-specialise in sports and exercise medicine, and I felt that through this diploma I would gain a clearer picture of whether I really wanted to pursue another fellowship. The programme at the University of Otago offered a qualification from a respected institution with quality teaching provided by leaders in the field.”

— Dr Andriy Boyko
Sports Physician (Australia)
Postgraduate Diploma in Musculoskeletal Medicine


MSME papers

Paper Code Year Title Points Teaching period
MSME701 2024 Clinical Diagnosis 15 Semester 1
MSME702 2024 Musculoskeletal Tissues 15 Not offered in 2024
MSME703 2024 Musculoskeletal Disorders 15 Not offered in 2024
MSME705 2024 Regional Disorders - Spine 15 Semester 1
MSME706 2024 Regional Disorders - Limbs 15 Semester 2
MSME707 2024 Musculoskeletal Management 15 Not offered in 2024
MSME709 2024 Clinical Therapeutics 15 Semester 2
MSME710 2024 Recreational and Sports Injuries 15 Semester 1

More information

Contact us

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery and Musculoskeletal Medicine
University of Otago, Christchurch
Tel +64 3 364 0469

Studying at Otago

This information must be read subject to the statement on our Copyright & Disclaimer page.

Regulations on this page are taken from the 2024 Calendar and supplementary material.

Back to top