top of page


Where humankind goes, medicine must follow...
We must reevaluate the agreements
that humans have made for the natural world...

Welcome to "World Extreme Medicine" with your host, Dr. Thorne, a physician specialized in wilderness and emergency medicine. In this series, we will be exploring the most extreme places on Earth and beyond, from the highest peaks to the depths of the ocean and even into outer space.

Joining us on our adventures will be National Geographic photographer, Chad Copeland, who will be capturing stunning visuals of the landscapes, wildlife, and people we encounter along the way.

But our focus will not just be on the thrill of adventure. As medical professionals, we know that the environments we will be exploring present unique challenges to human health and survival. We will be demonstrating what it takes to overcome these challenges, from managing altitude sickness and frostbite to treating injuries and illnesses in remote locations.

We will also be highlighting the important role that medical professionals play on expeditions, whether it be on a research mission to Antarctica or a climbing expedition to Mount Everest. Our team will be interviewing doctors and medical staff who have worked in these extreme environments, sharing their experiences and expertise.

So join us as we embark on an exciting and educational journey into the unknown, exploring the limits of human endurance and the critical role of medical professionals in extreme environments. This is "World Extreme Medicine".



World Extreme Cinema shows the challenges life must face to survive in various environments and how these ecosystems become more extreme when faced with the many threats of climate and human-activity. As this series intersects medicine, adventure, science, and conservation, it brings up important questions we must ask ourselves as we imagine future possibilities. Human health is not exclusive to humans, it depends on the health of our planet, flora, and fauna which create globalized balance.


Our Motivation

PPG Down.png

Wildlife and wild places are what balance our planet, and their small changes are felt everyday. Where beavers build, they reduce drought. Where coral thrives, coastlines are safe from natural disasters. Where bees pollinate, they drive global food production. 

As our wildlife and spaces dwindle, we face extinction ourselves. Who will be the ones to mend our rivers, to protect our coasts, to pollinate plants for food? Who will be the ones to regulate our global climate temperatures, to preserve our fresh waters, to clean the air we breathe?

Our nature is disappearing and at rates we as a species have never witnessed on our planet before. We cannot survive without nature, but nature can survive without us.  -Lianna Nixon


Embark upon a series of terrestrial and cosmic expeditions with an emphasis on conservation and climate impact on health with Cinematographer Chad Copeland (National Geographic), Scientist Lianna Nixon and World Extreme Medical Doctor Elizabeth Thorne. In the team’s journey through extreme circumstances, the audience will grip their chairs as they watch challenges unfold and see what it takes to accomplish a successful assignment in each episode.




See what it takes to prepare for an expedition and the challenges that follow a single uncalculated decision. Watch as extreme physicians launch into action beyond scrapes and bruises, to save a life and help carry the mission forward into the unknown. Feel the tension build as our filmmaking team goes beyond their limits to get the shot to give wildlife a voice and the juxtaposition of our doctors fulfilling their duty to keep the team alive.




There’s a statement that haunts every project, “if something hasn’t gone wrong, then we’re not doing it right”. Capturing cinematic visuals of wildlife, adventure and wild places is no easy task and impossible without appropriately trained members on the team. Where humankind goes, medicine must follow… A powerful truth that is realized on assignments and the subject of our series. 




ep1: Extreme Lava

Mission: Seek & Respect, looking for unique wildlife pivotal to the local ecosystem

Lava, the molten rock, bringer of life and death. Lava is what is beneath our Earth's crust and keeps the continental plates continually moving. When lava comes to the surface within active volcanic regions, it transforms ecosystems and there is even some evidence to volcanoes influencing climate. When eruptions occur, particles released in the air can shade the planet from solar radiation, cooling the planet for months after violent eruptions. They also are linked to warming as they release greenhouse gases and sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere. When volcanic materials break down they form some of the most fertile soil on earth which has been used to produce abundance in food and foster human agricultural practices for over a millenia. 

Doctors Notes:

- fire brigade input with search and rescue capabilities 

- Smoke inhalation 

- Toxins 

- Fire and burns risk 


ep2: Extreme TROPIC

Mission: Seek & Respect, looking for unique wildlife pivotal to the local ecosystem

Tropical ecosystems are home to some of the most biodiverse regions on our planet. It not only houses resources like food, water, and medicine, it is home to nearly half of the flora and fauna that live on our planet. Even more so, tropical ecosystems are essential to our global climate system by absorbing carbon dioxide. Rainforests typically absorb twice as much carbon as they emit each year. Within the last 50 years nearly one-third of tropical rainforests have been destroyed. As they continue to face deforestation, fragmentation, overexploitation, pollution, and climate change, these ecosystems struggle to sustainably maintain the biodiversity they hold and that stabilize global climate. 

Doctors Notes:

- humidity 

- Bugs and creepy crawlies 

- Tropical diseases 


ep3: Extreme Safari

Mission: Seek & Respect, looking for unique wildlife pivotal to the local ecosystem

The plains are critical ecosystems that provide feedings for all animals, providing balance for inhabitants who depend on them. They serve important roles in preserving freshwater, holding biodiversity and are even linked to alleviate greenhouse gas emission as carbon sinks. As development, unstable weather conditions, and overconsumption of resources threaten plains ecosystems, inhabitants must migrate longer distances for food and water and the ecosystem becomes more unstable and unable to support the biodiversity it holds.  

Doctors Notes:

- Large animals 

- Small animals 

- Heat exposure 


ep4: Extreme Altitude

Mission: Seek & Respect, looking for unique wildlife pivotal to the local ecosystem

Mountains cover 22 percent of our planet's terrestrial surfaces and provide habitat for plants and animals. Also known as "water towers" they provide approximately 60% to 80% of all freshwater resources on our planet. As climate change brings about unstable weather patterns and increased temperatures, glacial formations in these regions are retreating and disappearing. Alpine climates become more unstable, bringing about more avalanche activity which threatens mountain communities. They are also less likely to provide freshwater, food, and energy resources that nearly a billion people depend on globally. The retreat of glacial formations as well as less snowfall also bears greater consequences such as drought and more violent forest fires. 

Doctors Notes:


- O2 requirements 

- Hyperbaric chambers 

Cave of Crystals -Giant Crystal Cave.jpg

ep5: Extreme Cavern

Mission: Seek & Respect, looking for unique wildlife pivotal to the local ecosystem

Caverns hold some of the most unique environments and species on our planet. The formations beneath our Earth take thousands of years to slowly grow and produce the wondrous stalagmites, stalactites, flowstones, columns and much more. For thousands of years they have been home to species that could never survive above-ground ecosystems and provide shelter for many animals that navigate surface cave formations. Formed by volcanic processes millions of years ago, they play an important role in groundwater movement, connecting runoff water to rivers and springs that emerge at the Earth's surface. Increased human activity and development threatens underground and surface cave ecosystems and their delicate ecosystems. 

Doctors Notes:

- Limitations of light 

- Cave rescue 


ep6: Extreme Polar

Mission: Seek & Respect, looking for unique wildlife pivotal to the local ecosystem

Our polar regions are home to one of the most unique and extreme ecosystems on our planet. They are also the most rapidly changing regions on our planet. Polar regions drive global climate as sea ice reflects solar radiation back to space. With sea ice in decline and increased temperatures, more solar radiation is absorbed in the ocean and atmosphere, accelerating more melt and unstable climate conditions. 

Doctors Notes:

- Cold exposure risk 

- UV


ep7: Extreme Space

Mission: Seek & Respect, looking for unique wildlife pivotal to the local ecosystem

What happens on Earth is not exclusive to Earth. Much of our global climate is conditional to our planets physical location in space and time. The sun and moon drive many processes that occur on our planet such as weather, ocean current, seasons, photosynthesis for plants, and more.  

Space holds a place in human society as a symbol of possibility and hope. As we look towards exploring space and implementing space-based technologies such as remote sensing data, we may have a greater scientific understanding of our environment, local and globalized climate systems. 

Doctors Notes:

- Gravitational forces  

- Space Sickness

-Rest cycles

-Breathing challenges

-Physiological problems i.e. muscle atrophy and bone demineralization


WEC Final.png



Host - National Geographic


Extreme Scientist


Extreme Doctor -WEM


World Extreme Medicine

Edinburgh City

Founding team members at the

World Extreme Medicine conference in Edinburgh, Scotland.




Shawna Pandya

MD Dir Space Med Group


Peter Ben Embarek

WHO: Food Scientist


Hugh Montgomery

Professor of Medicine


Diana Dayal

SpaceX / Starlink

Bottom line

Never before has there been a conservation series showing the behind the scenes of the most daring and educational adventures known to humans. We focus on the implications of adventure, climate and wildlife in a beautifully filmed- multipart series with world renowned professionals. Buckle up and get ready for a journey of a lifetime.

bottom of page