ESSENTIAL ACUPUNCTURE CHICAGO

Practioners: Leigh Gilkey & Siri Michel

We have an integrative approach to healthcare and see healing as a collaboration between us, the individual—with all of their lived experience—and their other healthcare providers. We see working with people to restore and promote their health as an honor and are committed to thoughtful, compassionate, and respectful care for everyone.

We are nationally licensed acupuncturists (L.Ac.s) and board-certified herbalists. We both were awarded our Master of Science in Traditional Oriental Medicine (MSTOM) degree from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, one of the most acclaimed and rigorous acupuncture schools in the country. The training for an MSTOM consists of a 4-year, 3,000 hour program with instruction in Western medical anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology, and Chinese medical theory, which includes acupuncture, herbology, and therapeutic massage, as well as hands-on clinical experience.

Photo of Essential Acupuncture Chicago co-owner Leigh Gilkey

Leigh Gilkey, L.Ac., Dipl. O.M.

Leigh began her training at the Santa Barbara School of Oriental Medicine.  After completing the first year of study she returned to the Midwest, her family, the seasons and Chicago.  Continuing her studies at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine’s Chicago campus, she apprenticed at Chicago Women’s Health Center and assisted Marie France Collin at her private practice.

She has volunteered her time doing private and community acupuncture at the Cancer Wellness Center Northbrook, community acupuncture at the Logan Square Neighborhood Association and done outreach events for teacher wellness day at Chicago Public Schools.

Leigh has completed additional training in the following areas:

  • Canonical Chinese Medicine™ with Dr. Arnaud Versluys
  • Acupuncturist Without Borders - Healing Community Trauma
  • Classical Five Element Acupuncture with Neil Gumenick
  • Dr. Tan Balance Method Core Foundations
  • Dr. Tan Balance Method Advanced Track​
  • Cosmetic Rejuvenation Acupuncture with Denise Ellinger.

Leigh believes in the magic of the body, discovering avenues of self-growth and empowerment of the individual.

Leigh is a member of ILAAOM - Illinois Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.
​Verify NCCAOM certification here.  Verify Illinois license here.

Leigh can be reached at 773.629.9508 or at leigh@essentialchicago.org.

Photo of Essential Acupuncture Chicago co-owner Siri Michel

Siri Michel, L.Ac., Dipl. O.M.

Siri chose helping others as her path due to her own profound experiences of being helped by acupuncture at challenging points in her life.  She believes that it is an honor and a privilege to help others with their physical and emotional health goals, challenges, and transformations. She is committed to creating a safe and respectful space where people can follow their wellness journey.

While in school, she had the privilege of assisting both Marie-France Collin and Dr. Lixin Sha in their private acupuncture practices.  This experience allowed her to shape her vision and define her skills in a hands on setting while learning from experienced practitioners.

Siri has completed additional training in the following areas:

  • Canonical Chinese Medicine™ with Dr. Arnaud Versluys
  • Auricular Causative Diagnosis with Dr. Nadia Volf: observation of the ear, its structure and markings to more precisely determine the root cause of dysfunction in the body.
  • Dr. Tan Balance Method Core Foundations
  • Master Tung's Points with Brad Whisnant
  • Cosmetic Rejuvenation Acupuncture with Denise Ellinger.

When it's warm out, you can find Siri at her local community garden.

Siri is a member of ILAAOM - Illinois Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.
Verify NCCAOM certification here.  Verify Illinois license here.

Siri can be reached at 773.629.9508 or siri@essentialchicago.org.