Department of Medicine
Faculty Profiles by Division

Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine

Faculty Profiles

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photo Ronald K. Poropatich, MD

Professor of Medicine

Executive Director, Center for Military Medicine Research, Health Sciences

Senior Advisor for Telemedicine, UPMC

Colonel/Retired/U.S. Army


Phone: 412-864-3199

Office: UPMC Montefiore Hospital, NW628
3459 Fifth Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Phone: 412-864-3199
Fax: 412-692-2260
Administrative Assistant:
Judy Nauman
Phone: 412-864-3199
Fax: 412-692-2260
Administrative Assistant:
Katharine Wharton
Phone: 412-624-5293
Education and Training
BS, Biochemistry, University of Pittsburgh, 1977
MS, Bacteriology, Wagner College, Staten Island, 1978
MD, Drexel University (formerly Hahnemann University), 1985
Internship, Internal Medicine, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 1986
Residency, Internal Medicine, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 1988
Fellowship, Pulmonary Medicine, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 1991
Fellowship, Critical Care Medicine, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 1992
Research Interest
Dr. Poropatich is currently a co-Investigator on four DoD funded research projects at the University of Pittsburgh.
1. “Targeted Evaluation, Action, & Monitoring of Traumatic Brain Injury (TEAMTBI)”
Clinical trial that brings together civilian and military TBI patients, advanced evaluation methods, and world class experts in a monitored, multiple interventional trial design to address the heterogeneity of TBI and identify evidence-based treatment protocols. The goal is to confirm efficacious targeted therapies for TBI and provide deployable protocols and technology for large-scale cost effective diagnosis and management.

2. “Advanced Longitudinal Diffusion Imaging for TBI Diagnosis of Military Personnel”
This project will develop and advance MRI-based diffusion technology to quantify white matter loss in Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) using MRI based High Definition Fiber Tracking (HDFT) developed by this group. The project will implement, rigorously test, push through regulatory submission, and deploy this technology to DoD/VA hospitals.

3. “Combination of Extracorporeal Life Support and Mesenchymal Stem Cell Therapy for Treatment of ARDS in Combat Casualties and Evacuation of Service Members with ARDS”. Research aims to determine the best way to treat acute lung injury with and without intra-bronchial mesenchymal stem cells administered with low flow extra-corporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO).

4. “Oral Nitrite Therapy to Improve Physical Performance at High Altitude and to Prevent High Altitude Pulmonary Edema and High altitude Cerebral Edema”
The objective of this DoD funded study is to see if an FDA-approved nitrite pill can be used to prevent HAPE/HACE in a low oxygen environment.
Clinical Interest
Dr. Poropatich is an experienced Pulmonary/Critical Care Medicine physician who served 30 years on active duty in the US Army retiring in 2012 at the rank of Colonel with extended assignments at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD (formerly the Walter Reed Army Medical Center WRAMC, Washington, DC), from 1985 to 2012. His last assignment was at the US Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC) at Fort Detrick, MD serving as the Deputy Director of the Telemedicine and Advanced Technology Research Center (TATRC) from 2006-2012 where he managed large medical research programs and developed novel research programs and technologies in medical informatics and telemedicine.
Educational Interest
Dr. Poropatich is a long-standing educator and is a Professor of Medicine in the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh. He has been faculty at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Science (USUHS), Bethesda, MD since 1985 and serves as an Adjunct Professor of Medicine. He has over 60 publications in peer-reviewed medical journals, numerous book chapters, and edited 2 books on Telemedicine. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Internal Medicine in Medicine, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. He is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians, Fellow of the American College of Chest Physicians, Fellow and past president of the American Telemedicine Association, and Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering.
For my complete bibliography, Click Here.
Selected Publications:
Pavliscsak, H, Little, JR, Poropatich, RK, McVeigh, FL, Tong, J, Tillman, JS, Smith, CH, Fonda, SJ. Assessment of patient engagement with a mobile application among service members in transition. J Am Med Inform Assoc. 2016; Jan;23(1): 110-8.
Bashshur, RL, Shannon, GW, Smith, BR, Antoniotti, N, Alverson, D, Bashshur, N, Brown, E, Coye, M, Doarn, CR, Ferguson, S, Grigsby, J, Kvedar, JC, Krupinski, EA, Linkous, J, Merrell, RC, Nesbitt, T, Poropatich, R, Rheuban, K, Sanders, J, al. The Empirical Foundations of Telemedicine Interventions for Chronic Disease Management. Telemed J E Health. 2014; 20(9): 769-800.
Poropatich, RK, Pavliscsak, HH, Tong, JC, Little, JR, McVeigh, FL. mCare: Using Secure Mobile Technology to Support Soldier Reintegration and Rehabilitation. Telemed J E Health. 2014; 20(6): 563-569.
Poropatich, R, Lai, E, McVeigh, F, Bashshur, R. The U.S. Army Telemedicine and m-Health Program: Making a Difference at Home and Abroad. Telemed J E Health. 2013; 19(5): 1-7.
Doarn, CR, Shore, J, Ferguson, S, Jordan, PJ, Saiki, S, Poropatich, R. Challenges, Solutions, and Best Practices in Telemental Health Service Delivery across the Pacific Rim – A Summary. Telemed J E Health. 2012; 18(8): 654-60.
Evans, WD, Abroms, LC, Poropatich, RK, Nielson, P, Wallace, J. Mobile Health Evaluation Methods: Opportunities, Challenges and the text4baby Case Study. J Health Comm. 2012; 17(1): 22-29.
Kenyon, JI, Poropatich, R, Holtel, MR. Cell phones in Telehealth and Otolaryngology. Otolaryngol Clin North Am. 2011; Dec;44(6): 1351-8.
Doarn, CR, Barrigan, CR, Poropatich, RK. US Military Deployed Health Technology Summit – A Summary. Telemed J and e-Health. 2011; 17(6): 501-506.
Mines, MJ, Bower, KS, Lappan, CM, Mazzoli, RA, Poropatich, RK. The United States Army Ocular Teleconsultation program 2004 through 2009. AMJ Ophthalmol. 2011; 152(1): 126-132.
Jackson, GL, Krein, SL, Alverson, DC, Darkins, AW, Gunnar, W, Harada, ND, Helfrich, CD, Houston, TK, Klobucar, TF, Nazi, KM, Poropatich, RK, Ralston, JD, Bosworth, HB. Defining Core Issues in Utilizing Information Technology to Improve Access: Evaluation and Research Agenda. J Gen Intern Med. 2011; 26(2): 623-627.
Sponsored Research/Activities
Title: Four New Ideas to Protect Special Forces from the Stress of High Altitude
Role: Co-Investigator
Funding Agency: University of Colorado
Grant Number: RES W81XWH-15-C-0095
Start Year: 2016
End Year: 2017
Title: Combination of Extracorporeal Life Support and Mesenchymal Stem Cell Therapy for Treatment of ARDS in Combat Casualties and Evacuation of Service Members with ARDS
Role: Co-Investigator
Funding Agency: Army
Start Year: 2015
End Year: 2017
Title: Targeted Evaluation, Action and Monitoring of Traumatic Brain Injury (TEAM-TBI)
Role: Co-Investigator
Funding Agency: Army
Start Year: 2014
End Year: 2016