War's Medical Miracles and Who Gets to Use Them

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Wars have been hugely important for medical science that saves lives. In contrast to Vietnam, 90% of the wounded are coming home from Iraq and Afghanistan. That's led to renewed focus on repaying their sacrifices by making their lives better, despite disabilities caused by lost limbs and spinal chord injuries. Innovations include a wheelchair that climbs stairs. But like other new, high-tech inventions, it's very expensive. We talk with the inventor, a veteran who has one and others about what it takes and what it costs to restore a semblance of normal life.



  • Dean Kamen - Founder, DEKA Research and Development Corporation
  • Gary Linfoot - Chief Warrant Officer 4, US Army's 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment
  • Michael Mahler - Deputy Chief of Staff, Veterans Affairs' Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System
  • Gary Lawson - Vice President, America's Huey Foundation


Warren Olney