About Us

Our Story
Historically there has been a huge gap in communication between doctors and patients. Doctors are frequently overwhelmed, overloaded, and often simply do not know how to effectively communicate the complex subject matter their patients need to understand. This can leave patients confused, frustrated, and unable to ask questions they need to actively participate in their own care. We saw this hurdle as an opportunity to provide high-quality, accurate products that both empower doctors and educate patients.

Understand.com® is a global medical education company that is proud to have educated over 10,000,000 patients worldwide. Our unparalleled 3D medical animations are at the core of the patient learning experience. Our content clearly explains complex MOAs, disease pathologies, surgical techniques and procedures, as well as treatment methods for an assortment of medical topics.

Strategic corporate partners include Johnson & Johnson, Allergan, Mentor, Stryker, AAOS, ASPS, and numerous other medical device and pharmaceutical companies.
the understand team
Executive Team
Darik Volpa
Darik Volpa
Founder and CEO

Professional Experience

Darik Volpa began his professional career in 1994 with Stryker Corporation, a $7B orthopedic device manufacturer. He was responsible for several large product lines and launched over 50 medical devices. Darik turned around several lagging product lines and brought them up to industry leading growth rates with substantial increases in market share. He was recognized with various awards for his performance including “Marketing Professional of the Year”.

In 2003, Darik resigned from Stryker to start Understand.com®, a global medical education company that uses 3D animation to explain complex diseases, conditions, and procedures.

Under Darik’s leadership, Understand has experienced nine consecutive years of record sales growth. In 2010, Understand was recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of the fastest growing privately held companies in the United States coming in at 1,354 in the Inc. 5,000.

Leah Moak
Leah Moak
Creative Director


Leah Moak graduated from the University of Illinois in Chicago with a Master of Science in Biomedical Visualization. She began working at Understand.com as part of the animation team after graduation, but her role quickly expanded to encompass the entire animation process, and eventually into her current position as Creative Director. Leah has a diverse background in fine art, medical multimedia, information design, marketing, and production. Her experiences range from scientific writing and research, to multimedia creation, to managing the production process for large custom animations. Leah possesses passionate attention to detail and the ability to problem-solve and coordinate a variety of resources in order to successfully meet the creative goals of the many diverse projects that are undertaken at Understand.com.

Leah has managed projects for clients such as Allergan, Stryker, ASPS, and HSS.

Joseph Szakara
Joseph Szakara
Director of Design

Joseph oversees all of the company's design efforts. From video players, this website, and internal tools, he and his team strive to design interfaces that are clean and intuitive.


Joseph and his team employ a first-principles approach to design. They deconstruct the problems they're faced with to find elegant and unique solutions specific to Understand's needs.