Ron Peters's Reviews > Life at the Extremes
Life at the Extremes
A cool book for geeks; nicely illustrated with a good list of additional readings. I came across it on a list of suggested readings for pre-Med students. It’s written by a physiologist who describes what happens to the human body at extremes of high altitude, or upon rapid depressurization, in outer space, deep in the ocean, or when exposed to great cold, heat, physical exertion, and so on. How much can our bodies endure, and what causes them to fail? She also discusses how humans function compared with other animals under the same circumstances and explains why these differences exist. It’s an endless stream of the kind of spiffy trivia that the television character Gil Grissom spouts on every episode of Crime Scene Investigation. It’s also interesting (and, presumably, encouraging for physiology students) how many of these phenomena are still unexplained.
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