Welcome to Operation Walk Pittsburgh, a branch of a global health campaign bringing hope to many in need of orthopaedic surgery. Led by Dr. Anthony DiGioia, Operation Walk Pittsburgh was formed in 2008.
Dr. DiGioia has led his team to Guatemala, Panama and Honduras. The team has continued to expand since inception and has completed nearly 300 surgeries to date. Operation Walk Pittsburgh was the first chapter to travel to Honduras, pioneering the area for orthopaedic missions.
Operation Walk Pittsburgh was also one of the first Operation Walk chapters to perform surgeries in the United States for those in need. In 2012, the team operated on 7 western PA patients, setting new local records. Since 2010, 13 local surgeries have been completed.
Operation Walk is a private, not-for-profit, volunteer medical service organization that provides free surgical treatment for patients in developing countries and in the United States who have no access to life-improving care for arthritis or other debilitating bone and joint conditions. Operation Walk also educates in-country orthopedic surgeons, nurses, physical therapists and other healthcare professionals on the most advanced treatments and surgical techniques for diseases of the hip and knee joints. This is done in conjunction with surgeries and other humanitarian efforts to help create a lasting contribution to patient care in developing countries.
History of Operation Walk:
Operation Walk was started in 1995 by Lawrence D. Dorr, M.D. in Los Angeles, CA. On a teaching trip to Russia, Dr. Dorr had the idea that one of the best ways to teach physicians was to actually demonstrate the surgery. Dr. Dorr put together a team of surgeons, internal medicine doctors, anesthesiologists, nurses, and physical therapists and planned his first Operation Walk trip to Havana, Cuba. The connection was made through a former patient and the program took its first step. The team spent eight months getting all of the implants, medications, surgical supplies and postoperative supplies ready to be transported to Havana. The first trip was a success with 45 joints operated on in a 3-day period. It was a very rewarding experience for the team, and of course, everyone was full of enthusiasm to plan the next trip. Over the next 10 years, 2 Operation Walk teams operated 6 times in Cuba, helping over 250 patients.
Currently, there are 10 Operation Walk Teams throughout the US and Canada.