Brooke Army Medical Center

Brooke Army
Erin Trieb / VII Mentor Program for TIME

While amputations have been a signature wound of this decade's wars, for every amputee, there are 5 to 6 limb salvage patients. It's a literal term — a service member is injured badly enough so that a limb might be amputated, but doctors are able to save it. Limb salvage patients face the same long and intense rehabilitation as amputees. Private First Class Sergio Gonzales (center, above, bending his leg in black shorts), works out wearing an IDEO — short for Intrepid Dynamic Exoskeletal Orthosis — on his left leg. The IDEO is part of the Return to Run system developed by a team of Dr. Joe Hsu, an orthopedic surgeon, Ryan Blanck, a prosthetic engineer, and Johnny Owens, a physical therapists. The Return to Run system has helped more than 160 severely wounded warriors run, parachute from airplanes, and return to combat.

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