A MEDICAL student from Rustington is hoping to take her studies to new heights this year – 3,700m up the slopes of the world’s tallest mountain, to be exact.
Lucy Brennan, of Preston Avenue, aims to be in an elite team taking part in a ground-breaking research project next month, about 12,000ft up Mount Everest.
The project has the potential to radically improve the survival rates of intensive care patients across the globe.
However, the former Worthing College student faces a tough task to drum up cash to take part in the voluntary expedition, after funding from her university fell through.
Lucy, 24, who works part-time at the world-renowned Great Ormond Street Hospital, in London, said: “This is very, very exciting.
“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take part in what could be a potentially ground-breaking research project into the effects of hypoxia – a lack of oxygen in the cardiopulmonary system.
“It’s a phenomenal opportunity but as I am a student, and the grant I was supposed to receive fell through, it’s going to be very difficult for me to fund my trip out there.”
Lucy needs to raise about £2,000 to take part in the research expedition as a member of the team made up of intensive care doctors, nurses and scientists from charity Xtreme Everest 2.
If she can raise the cash, she will be joining the group leading a band of children and their parents up the slopes of the mountain to the Namche Bazaar.
Experiments will then be carried out on the children to test how they respond and adapt to low-level oxygen.
The research will be collated at the Centre for Altitude, Space and Extreme Environment Medicine at University College London (UCL).
Film crews from the BBC will also be documenting the study, which will involve a number of people including adults and identical twins.
Lucy said that the results of the experiment could shed light on some key aspects of treatments used in paediatric intensive care.
“Going up to these altitudes will help to simulate the critical conditions of intensive care” Lucy said. “So the opportunities for new treatments to be developed, through our research, is extremely exciting.”
Lucy plans to host a number of fund-raising challenges over the coming few days, before her four-week adventure sets off, on March 27.
To sponsor her, visit www.justgiving.com/XtremeEverest2-LucyBrennan or contact Lucy by sending an email to, L.Brennan1@uni.bsms.ac.uk
Lucy, a biological sciences graduate from Exeter University, has worked as a research assistant at UCL’s Institute of Child Health and Great Ormond Street Hospital within respiratory physiology. She now studies at the Brighton and Sussex Medical School.