Military Medicine: Photo Gallery of the Medical Frontier

Elisa Lichtenbaum | October 27, 2016

Memorials across America are dedicated to those who serve in the armed forces, acknowledging their sacrifice and service. For those who work in military medicine, that service extends beyond the battlefield — to the survivors returning home to resume their lives after combat and critical injury.

Military Medicine: Beyond the Battlefield, premiering Wednesday, November 9 at 10pm ET on PBS, tells the story of the men and women who are winning victories for both military and civilians on this new medical frontier. ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff, who was critically injured while covering the War in Iraq in 2006 and saved by breakthroughs in military medicine, hosts and reports. The photo gallery here shows veterans, doctors, medical centers featured in Military Medicine, as well as robotic arms, prosthetic legs, models for 3D-printed tissue replacement, and recovery therapies.

Woodruff takes viewers inside laboratories, hospitals, and rehabilitation centers, where military medicine is making artificial arms with life-like responses, 3-D printing new organs, adding robotic arms to wheelchairs, and giving damaged legs new strength. The personal stories of veterans, surgeons, researchers, rehab experts, and families reveal how medical advances are changing the lives of service members and the country.

Ramon Padilla, who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, participated in the trial of a robotic prosthetic arm that uses implanted sensors to stimulate movement. Thanks to this groundbreaking technology, Padilla can bend his thumb and play ball with his children – things he couldn’t do with his first prosthetic arm.

We also meet Elana Duffy, who is dealing with memory loss and other symptoms from a traumatic brain injury she sustained while serving in Iraq in 2005. Specialized clinics, such as one at the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany, are helping service members identify and heal from these invisible wounds.

At Richard’s Coffee Shop in Mooresville, North Carolina, veterans from every generation have been coming for more than 20 years to connect. Here we meet Dale Beatty, who lost both his legs while serving in Iraq. After recovering, Beatty co-founded an organization that provides housing solutions for disabled American veterans.

As these stories reveal, the goal of military medicine is to not only save lives, but to make the lives of returning warriors better — and help future generations.

Watch Military Medicine Preview


Military Medicine: Beyond the Battlefield, a one-hour documentary from NJTV for WNET, premieres Wednesday, November 9 at 10pm ET on PBS; ABC News correspondent Bob Woodruff hosts.

More Programming on Veterans

Veterans Coming Home, a web series from WLIW, connects veterans and civilians by telling stories, challenging stereotypes, and exploring how the values of service and citizenship are powerful connectors for all Americans. Share your Stories of Service and learn more at veterans.wliw.org.