The Ecuador Medical-Dental Mission (Operation Esperanza) has been going annually to Cuenca, Ecuador, for the past 18 years. Some patients show their gratitude by returning every year to help where they can, mostly by translating in the clinics and on the ward. In the following story, Patricia is one such patient. One of her hips, which was replaced 14 years ago, required a revision this year.

2015 Ecuador Medical-Dental MissionPrayer at bedside prior to surgery

by Mary Knight

“Some of the things that always stand out for me include the returning (follow-up) patients who hug us and are ever so appreciative and grateful. This year, Patricia and her son, Andreas, translated for us, even on the day of her surgery. I had to plead with Andreas to eat some lunch. He drove all over town on Tuesday to get four keys made for the storage room and would not accept anything in return.

I also remembered the man who was cancelled last year on the morning of his surgery because of a bad stasis ulcer on his shin. He was able to have his surgery done this year. He hopped out of bed the morning after surgery and smiled the entire time. His roommate was another satisfied patient and he also smiled the entire time.

The fact that “Prayer” is on the pre-operative checklist (along with pre-operative medications, etc.) always moves me, especially when the pastor prays for the doctors and nurses.

Learn more about Operation Esperanza


Help bring mobility to those who cannot afford hip or knee surgery in Ecuador:
• $500 will cover one quarter of the cost of a prosthesis
• $1000 will cover half the cost of a prosthesis
• $2000 will pay the full cost of a prosthesis