About The Center for Optimal Health
Dr. Cheikin opened the Center for Optimal Health in 2005 as a community where like-minded people can share ideas, information and healing. All practitioners are either directly supervised by Dr. Cheikin or have independent licenses with at least five years of experience and a track record of excellence. For more information on Holistic Medicine, click here.
About Dr. Cheikin
Michael Cheikin MD is a holistic physician, Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (“Physiatry”), Pain Management, Spinal Cord Medicine and Electrodiagnostic Medicine, all recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties.
He received his M.D. magna cum laude from SUNY Downstate (Brooklyn NY) in 1980. He designed a special internship in both Family Practice and Psychiatry at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn, New York, to better understand the family as a unit of mind-body health. To pursue his interest in mind-body medicine, he served his residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (“Physiatry”) at St. Vincent’s Hospital and Medical Center in New York City.
He is also licensed in Medical Acupuncture since 2001 when he completed his training at the prestigious UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) program in Medical Acupuncture for physicians.
Dr. Cheikin has extensively studied yoga, the biochemistry of diet and metabolism, Ayurvedic, Chinese and energy medicine and other alternative modalities for 30 years. He designs balanced, natural, individualized health programs for his patients utilizing a combination of education and counseling, medical yoga, whole foods and supplements and medical acupuncture. He also uses special laboratory tests and diet plans for his patients with obscure, chronic and severe problems who have not responded satisfactorily to other methods of healing. He was called by Advance Magazine “the physiatrist you go to after you’ve been to all the other physiatrists” (click here).
For over 10 years, Dr. Cheikin served as the Medical Director of Chestnut Hill Rehabilitation Hospital, where he led the institution and it’s nursing home through numerous successful surveys by JCAHO, CARF, and other State and Federal reviews. While there, he developed programs for Chronic Pain, Wheelchair Evaluation and Prescription, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue, Wound Care, Spasticity and Contracture Management, Workers Injury, Senior Assessment, Medical Yoga, and others.
In the 1980’s and 1990’s he was an Adjunct Professor of BioMedical Engineering at the Cooper Union School of Engineering in New York City, where he worked with graduate engineering students on hardware and software projects to measure human movement, bioelectricity and create special stimuli for neuro-rehabilitation.
For twenty-five years, Dr. Cheikin was the Associate Medical Director of Inglis House, A Wheelchair Community, in Philadelphia, PA, where he provided specialty care to patients with chronic disability using conventional and holistic medicine. He is an expert in wheelchairs, pain, wounds, spasticity and contracture management and other conditions that affect people with disability.
Dr. Cheikin is the author of the book “Chronic Pain, Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndromes: A Nine Step Pathway to Healing”. He has also produced CD’s on yoga and relaxation for his patients and students.
Dr. Cheikin currently teaches two yoga classes a week in Plymouth Meeting in a beautiful studio that he designed, and oversees other classes as well. These classes are offered at the medical/gentle and beginner levels, and are open to people of all ages and medical conditions with or without yoga experience. For those with complex conditions consultation is advised to determine the appropriate level. He and his staff also offer private and semi-private yoga instruction to those who cannot attend class because of distance, disability, or other issues. All teachers working with Dr. Cheikin have at least 15 years experience with yoga and have degrees in fields related to heath and education.
Dr. Cheikin is a regular contributor to Natural Awakening and Wisdom Magazines. Reprints of several of his articles are available for free on this web site. (Click here)
Dr. Cheikin is also a playwright, having several plays produced in the Philadelphia area. Click here for more information including a review of two of his plays in the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Dr. Cheikin’s “favorite” patients are those who either are seeking prevention, or have chronic and obscure problems. In both cases, he attracts patients who wish to work in a collaborative manner and are seeking root-cause healing and prevention. His approach is methodological and efficient in time and resources. For most inquiries, an initial consultation is recommended and is often “covered” by insurance (a specialty referral is required if the patient’s HMO requires one).
Many patients ask if Dr. Cheikin is willing to act as a “primary care physician”. Unfortunately, he cannot because the demands of keeping abreast of the many developments in holistic medicine, and the research and development of new protocols for chronic illnesses. However, he is glad to coordinate care with his patients’ primary care physician. After an initial consultation, he may be able to help identify candidates to serve as primary care physician and/or other specialists who can match a patient’s needs.
Dr. Cheikin is also willing, under special circumstances, to have phone appointments, when getting to the office is not practical due to distance or disability. However, for an initial consultation, a visit in person is required due to the current crisis in malpractice and licensing in Pennsylvania. We maintain a list of several local hotels that can accommodate patients coming from a distance.
This doctor is the most thorough, knowledgeable, and brilliant of any that I’ve experienced. I hesitate even to write this review, because when word gets out about how good he is, I won’t be able to get an appointment! He is ten years ahead of anyone else.
… The supplements alone made me feel much better and helped tackle some of health issues I was experiencing. The dietary guidelines are customized for each client based on extensive blood work that he analyzes. … I enjoy the research and information he provides; it helps explain why I am taking certain supplements and what effect certain foods have on the human body. I highly recommend Dr. Cheikin if you are interested in holistic health.
Updated May 7, 2020