Bedside Rounds is a storytelling podcast about medical history and medicine’s intersections with society and culture. Host Adam Rodman seeks to tell a few of these weird, wonderful, and intensely human stories that have made modern medicine.
57 - The Second Wave
In August of 1918, a horrific second wave of the Spanish Flu crashed across the world. In this episode, the third of a four-part series exploring hydroxychloroquine and COVID-19, I’ll explore this single moment in time, through the mysterious origins of the Spanish Flu and historiographical controversies, scientific missions to mass burial sites in remote Alaskan villages, the ill-fated journey of the HMS Mantua, debates about how to count victims of a pandemic, and the mystery behind Pfeiffer’s bacillu
56 - La Grippe
The 1889 Russian Flu was the first influenza pandemic in an increasingly globalized world. In this episode, the second of a two-parter on how hydroxychloroquine became a great hope in COVID-19, we’ll talk about how quinine became the standard of care for influenza. Along the way, we’ll discuss the astrological origins of the flu, conspiracy theories about previous global coronavirus outbreaks, the media panic over the Russian Flu, and first year law school cases about Carbolic Smoke Balls.
Introducing the Curious Clinicians!
This bonus episode introduces episode four of the Curious Clinicians, about Vincent Van Gogh and digitalis. The Curious Clinicians is a new medical podcast produced by Hannah Abrams, Avi Cooper, and Tony Breu; you can download them all at curiousclinicians.com.
55 - The Fever Tree
Where did cinchona, the first medication to cure malaria, come from? This episode explores the murky history of the bark of the fever tree and its derivative chloroquine with mysterious pre-Columbian Pacific crossings of the plasmodium parasite, Jesuit priests and Inca healers, a Chinese Emperor performing a clinical trial to treat his fever, chemistry leading to the first modern pharmaceuticals, and imperialism on a global scale.
54 - 1918 (guest episode with Hannah Abrams and Gaby Mayer)
The 1918 influenza pandemic, or the Spanish Flu, is the obvious parallel to the COVID-19 pandemic -- a worldwide plague attacking a scientific and global society much like our own. In this guest episode by Hannah Abrams and Gaby Mayer, we chase these parallels wherever they take us, talking etiology, presentation, treatments, masking, curve-flattening, and mortality measures.
53 - The Antonine Plague (guest episode with Liam Conway-Pearson)
Plagues have fascinated us since antiquity, but the Antonine Plague stands out because one of the most famous physicians in Western history was present to make detailed observations. In this episode, guest host Liam Conway-Pearson explores what we know -- and what we don't know -- about this plague, which ravaged Rome two millennia ago. Plus a brand new #AdamAnswers about using convalescent plasma to treat the Spanish Flu of 1918!