Medical miracle on Everest: Ken Kamler on TED.com

Posted by: Shanna Carpenter

When the worst disaster in the history of Mount Everest climbs occurred, Ken Kamler was the only doctor on the mountain. At TEDMED, he shares the incredible story of the climbers’ battle against extreme conditions and uses brain imaging technology to map the medical miracle of one man who survived roughly 36 hours buried in the snow. (Recorded at TEDMED, October 2009 in San Diego, CA. Duration: 20:50)

Watch Ken Kamler’s talk on TED.com, where you can download this TEDTalk, rate it, comment on it and find other talks and performances from our archive of 600+ TEDTalks.

Comments (5)

  • ida shine commented on Mar 31 2010

    Ken hamler narrates his experience of climbing a everest a medical tourism.He expressed with a great joy.according climbing a mountain is not a matter but self condifidence is real part .They went with a gang with six members .they take their food and went .they also had a training .they also carried along wih them.they carried two oxgyen tanks along with them they went with lot sand lots of difficulties .but they faced with enjoyment.they also got sick .but they continued their journey.their only is to achieve a everet .at thtime a sudden a rainfall.they could nt manage them but they managed them too.at time Ken hamler is a old age person.he got more sick and also he is facing lots and lots of struggle.its amiracle.but they did with cruesity.at the time ken hamler shares his experience with us that was hob who accompanined with him.his wife was pergnt with three months baby.with less conversation withthe baby get aborted and in that time he is confident

  • 09ec 05 commented on Mar 30 2010

    Right different people seem to attach different meanings to the word ‘faith’ which is why i asked.
    I think i follow what you’re trying to say, for example if some people were rock climbing, one might have faith that the rope was well made and that the others with him were experieced professions, another might have faith that a divine being would keep them from falling, while yet another might have faith in his own ability to get through whatever might happen. does that sound along the lines of what you mean?
    I couldn’t say they are all ‘right’ though, as whether something is correct or not has nothing to do with a point of view – having faith in the strength of a rope doesn’t make it strong.
    Its a great pity that Dr Kamler does not give credit to another climber who lost his life on the mountain during that year. His name Bruce Herod.
    He was also caught in the storm that claimed the lives of Rob Hall and his team.

  • ida shine commented on Mar 29 2010

    ken kamler shares his experience in a joy.his thought and acheivements is great.It gives informative thought to me.Its is very thrilling too.And he declares the power of human brain in surival situations.he did three ,four times work technicaly with NASA.His enjoyed his point in his view.he carried lot of medicines.,after 2 monthshe had a traning .the sun also shine in that area gives little warming.Its dangerous and dramatic.Traveling in a iceland is thrilling but there is a enjoyment also.its calm and deadly view.they carry two oxygen with light weight and radioactivity spread on the stone and its exhausted.the condition is cruel.he also said shares about his who accampanied with him.the man whose name is Hob is in the climbing mountain.his wife is pergnant due to less conversation his wife get aborted.all in some critical situations to face .Although wit confidience.From his speech though climbing everest is difficuit they did wit sucess and confidence.enjoy life happily

  • aishwarya channekar commented on Mar 28 2010

    well, thats a very nice talk and it was about Mt.Everst and the crew’s experience.
    it was very thrill worth and that was a nice but with a mundane talk of ken..
    he explains that about a miracle thing which was not worth of just a talk or spech..and well of some inconvinence that happend there in..Kamler was at Camp there on Mount Everest preparing for a summit attempt when a ferocious storm engulfed thier team of climbers returning from the peak. As the only doctor on the mountain when the storm hit, he treated the survivors as they descended from Camp. it seems like this was hardly Kamler’s first experience with “extreme medicine.” A climber and doctor on many Everest expeditions, he has worked with National Geographic to carry out geological research using laser telescopes and global positioning satellite beacons.
    He’s a medical doctor who’s spent decades exploring some of the world’s most inhospitable places jungles of the Amazon, to the peaks of Mt.Everest……And thats abnormal.

  • dpri priya commented on Mar 20 2010

    A very interesting subject in a boring talk. ken should have thought of some other forms of input so that his talk was made more interesting . He talks about a medically impossible thing that has been made possible with will power, something which could not be achieved by all men, but his tone is so monotonous and it makes such a big achievement sound simple. At the beginning he talks about so many things that are unnecessary which is the main negative to his talk.