Operation Walk Boston would not be possible without the generous support of DePuy, and I'd like to recognize their contribution to our mission. DePuy donates all of the implants we use in the Dominican Republic, which is no small feat. It requires a tremendous commitment of inventory, because knee replacements consist of a minimum of three separate pieces per patient, and hip replacements have a minimum of five pieces. All of these components come in a variety of sizes to account for anatomic differences, and even with the use of special pre-operative x-ray templates, it is impossible to predict exactly which components will be necessary in a given surgery.
Here is an example of the pre-operative templates that are used to predict which components will be necessary for a hip replacement. The template on the left is placed on top of X-rays of the pelvis to gauge the size of the acetabulum (socket of the hip joint) and the template on the right is used to do the same for the femoral component (ball of the hip joint).
The need to have specific combinations of implants available within minutes of a surgeon determining the appropriate sizes means that an incredible amount of equipment must be brought to the Dominican Republic.
Each box in this photo contains specially packaged implants for use in our patients. This area is only part of the supply donated by DePuy, but it gives you an idea of the number of implants needed to make Operation Walk Boston a success.
DePuy representative Joshua Eaton is shown here bringing the components for a hip replacement into the operating room. He and his colleagues make sure that we have the implants we need, and are always available to provide their expertise about the nuances of the joint replacements we use.
The DePuy team posing outside the operating rooms.
DePuy's willingness to provide us with implants allows us to provide joint replacements that are identical to what a patient at one of our hospitals in Boston would receive.
Forrest H. Schwartz, MD (Orthopedic Surgery Resident)