Local doctor headed to London to treat team USA Olympic athletes

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PITTSBURGH - Doctor Eric Anish is used to treating athletes.

As a sports medicine specialist at UPMC and the team physician at Duquesne University, he sees all sorts of sports injuries. Now he is taking that knowledge to volunteer at the Olympics.

"I thought it would be an amazing opportunity to work with Olympic athletes," he said.

Anish will spend a month in England working at the U.S. Sports Medicine Clinic. He expects to work up to 16 hours each day, treating some of Team USA's 500-plus athletes.

Anish said the Olympians aren't the only ones feeling the pressure.

"You're seeing athletes where even the most minor injury or illness could be the difference between being a gold medalist or not being on the podium. So it's a big responsibility and a fair amount of pressure," said Anish.

He credited his experience at Duquesne and at the recent Pan-Am Games in Mexico for preparing him to work with the world's elite athletes.

"I think they know that we have their best interest at heart and that we're part of the team helping them achieve their goals," Anish said.

Although the United States Olympic Committee provides medical equipment, Anish is bringing his own kit packed with syringes, splits and needles.

He said a lot of illnesses will be colds, diarrhea and rashes, but he will be ready for anything.

"You pretty much can see anything. You have to be prepared to deal with just about any illness or injury," said Anish.

Anish said he waited 10 years for this Olympic opportunity and said one of the biggest rewards will be working with and learning from other doctors.

"Its allowed me to bring new knowledge and new skills back to my practice here in Pittsburgh," he said.

Anish is also looking forward to once again working alongside some of the same physicians he met at the Pan-Am Games.

He will leave for England next week.