As a child, Mike Vorozilchak aspired to be a physician. He ended up working in health care, but in a different capacity.
Vorozilchak studied athletic training in college and worked during the summers in a cardiac rehabilitation unit, but he became somewhat leery of the traditional model of medicine.
"It was all about fixing things after they were broken," he says of the approach based on drugs and surgery.
So he took a different route. After learning about chiropractic care from a roommate, Vorozilchak became convinced it was a career worth pursuing.
"I researched the history and philosophy, and it just made perfect sense," he says.
He attended the New York Chiropractic College in Seneca Falls and worked for a chiropractor in Montour Falls, Schuyler County, before opening Finger Lakes Family Chiropractic & Wellness P.C. in Geneva in 2007.
Vorozilchak, 33, opened the business with his wife, Meredith, who first served as office manager and now is a chiropractor as well, having graduated from the New York Chiropractic College in December.
The three-person office is housed in a building on West North Street in Geneva that was built in the early 1960s by Meredith's grandfather, William Achilles M.D., and his medical partners.
The Vorozilchaks, who are expecting their first child later this year, also live in Geneva.
Meredith Vorozilchak, 31, took a winding career path. After earning bachelor's and master's degrees in sports administration, she decided to work on the business end of the chiropractic practice and honed her skills at an office in Rochester before the couple opened the Geneva practice.
Then she decided to pursue a degree in chiropractic, as well.
"So many patients were getting healthy naturally," she says, "with fewer symptoms like headaches and less dependency on meds."
The Vorozilchaks-who go by Drs. Mike and Meredith-use a holistic approach, focusing on wellness and preventive care. The office also has health care products for sale, from vitamins to pillows.
Patients generally come from within 20 to 40 miles, from Syracuse to Rochester, and range in age from newborn up to the elderly. The business uses technology to assess performance and track progress. patients new to the practice undergo painless, non-invasive procedures that provide a snapshot of how the body is functioning.
The tests assess the nervous system-how nerves and muscles that support the spine are functioning. They can also check spinal alignment, and additional X-rays can be done on-site to help with that assessment. The exam identifies areas and patterns of abnormal tension and stress, Mike Vorozilchak says. Followup tests are done to see how the body is responding to care.
The practice also is committed to community education. Mike Vorozilchak, in particular, often gives talks at schools, businesses and other venues, discussing wellness, the impact of stress on the body and healthy aging.
In the future, the Vorozilchaks say, a continued focus will be on chiropractic pediatric care, noting that evidence suggests chiropractic care can help with problems such as allergies or autism.
The goal is to start healthier habits from day one, Mike Vorozilchak says, noting the key role the spine plays in overall health.
"We live our lives through our nervous systems," he says.
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