179 episodes

This podcast might not actually kill you, but Erin Welsh and Erin Allmann Updyke cover so many things that can. In each episode, they tackle a different topic, teaching listeners about the biology, history, and epidemiology of a different disease or medical mystery. They do the scientific research, so you don’t have to.
 
Since 2017, Erin and Erin have explored chronic and infectious diseases, medications, poisons, viruses, bacteria and scientific discoveries. They’ve researched public health subjects including plague, Zika, COVID-19, lupus, asbestos, endometriosis and more.

Each episode is accompanied by a creative quarantini cocktail recipe and a non-alcoholic placeborita.

Erin Welsh, Ph.D. is a co-host of the This Podcast Will Kill You. She is a disease ecologist and epidemiologist and works full-time as a science communicator through her work on the podcast. Erin Allmann Updyke, MD, Ph.D. is a co-host of This Podcast Will Kill You. She’s an epidemiologist and disease ecologist currently in the final stretch of her family medicine residency program.

This Podcast Will Kill You is part of the Exactly Right podcast network that provides a platform for bold, creative voices to bring to life provocative, entertaining and relatable stories for audiences everywhere. The Exactly Right roster of podcasts covers a variety of topics including science, true crime, comedic interviews, news, pop culture and more. Podcasts on the network include My Favorite Murder with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark, Buried Bones, That's Messed Up: An SVU Podcast and more.

This Podcast Will Kill You Exactly Right

    • Science
    • 4.8 • 15.8K Ratings

This podcast might not actually kill you, but Erin Welsh and Erin Allmann Updyke cover so many things that can. In each episode, they tackle a different topic, teaching listeners about the biology, history, and epidemiology of a different disease or medical mystery. They do the scientific research, so you don’t have to.
 
Since 2017, Erin and Erin have explored chronic and infectious diseases, medications, poisons, viruses, bacteria and scientific discoveries. They’ve researched public health subjects including plague, Zika, COVID-19, lupus, asbestos, endometriosis and more.

Each episode is accompanied by a creative quarantini cocktail recipe and a non-alcoholic placeborita.

Erin Welsh, Ph.D. is a co-host of the This Podcast Will Kill You. She is a disease ecologist and epidemiologist and works full-time as a science communicator through her work on the podcast. Erin Allmann Updyke, MD, Ph.D. is a co-host of This Podcast Will Kill You. She’s an epidemiologist and disease ecologist currently in the final stretch of her family medicine residency program.

This Podcast Will Kill You is part of the Exactly Right podcast network that provides a platform for bold, creative voices to bring to life provocative, entertaining and relatable stories for audiences everywhere. The Exactly Right roster of podcasts covers a variety of topics including science, true crime, comedic interviews, news, pop culture and more. Podcasts on the network include My Favorite Murder with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark, Buried Bones, That's Messed Up: An SVU Podcast and more.

    Ep 137 ME/CFS: What’s in a name? (A lot, actually)

    Ep 137 ME/CFS: What’s in a name? (A lot, actually)

    In many ways, this week’s episode on myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a companion piece to last week’s episode on Long Covid. The two share many similarities: a wide range of debilitating symptoms lingering long after infection, an illness which can transform from day to day or week to week, dismissal and downplaying by the medical community, a big question mark under “pathophysiological cause”, and so many others. These parallels can tell us a great deal about our concepts of disease and how we deal with uncertainty in science and medicine. But the differences between these two can be equally revealing. In this episode, we dig into what we know and what we hypothesize about the biological underpinnings of ME/CFS before tracing the twisty history of this disease, as popular perception switched back and forth and back again from “real” to “imagined” disease. We wrap up the episode with a look at some of the current research and promising treatments for ME/CFS. Both ME/CFS and Long Covid demonstrate the power of patients and patient advocates in raising awareness about poorly understood diseases and the impact that sharing personal stories can have. You can find more incredible work by Katie Walters, the provider of one of our firsthands for this episode, by clicking on this link.
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    • 1 hr 44 min
    Ep 136 Long Covid: A long time coming

    Ep 136 Long Covid: A long time coming

    We’re back with our season 7 premiere, and we’re kicking things off with a topic that we’ve wanted to cover for a long time, even if the topic itself hasn’t been around all that long. That’s right, we’re taking on Long Covid. When SARS-CoV-2 began making its way around the world in 2020, it was thought to cause a mild illness in most people, with complete recovery a couple of weeks after first getting infected. But just a short time into the pandemic, people began to report debilitating symptoms lingering for months after recovery was “supposed” to happen. What started out as a trickle of reports soon turned into a tsunami, and this condition, which came to be known as Long Covid, transformed our understanding of this viral infection. In this episode, we explore how the concept of Long Covid was defined by those who experience it, who also continue to advocate for better treatment, more research, and real compassion from medical professionals. We examine what we currently know about the biology of this condition, and delve into some of the most promising research avenues that may give us a greater understanding of or ability to treat Long Covid. This story is still being written, but already it can tell us so much about our concepts of infectious disease and how the medical system treats those with “invisible” illness.
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    • 1 hr 37 min
    Ep 135 Menopause is whatever you want it to be

    Ep 135 Menopause is whatever you want it to be

    For our season 6 finale, we’re spending some time with menopause. How many nicknames can you think of for menstruation? Quite a few, I’m sure. “That time of the month”, “Aunt Flo”, “the red wave”, “period”, the list goes on. But what about euphemisms for menopause? We’ve got “the change” or “change of life”, “climacteric”, and… that’s it? There may be more out there, but the comparison is revealing. Despite the fact that roughly half of the global population has or will one day experience menopause, the lack of nicknames demonstrates the silence, often tinged with shame, still enveloping it. In this episode, we explore the roots of this silence and the many historical misconceptions about menopause that frame our current perspective. We also examine the effect that this silence has on our understanding of the physiological processes underlying this transition. Why do some people experience symptoms and others do not? Why do humans experience menopause? What is the grandmother effect? What’s the latest on hormone replacement therapy? These are only a sampling of the many questions we delve into in this info-packed, frustration-laden, and eye-opening episode.
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    • 2 hr 11 min
    Ep 134 Tonsils: Underestimated and underappreciated

    Ep 134 Tonsils: Underestimated and underappreciated

    Raise your hand if you or someone you know has had their tonsils removed. If your hand is sky-high, there’s a pretty good chance that you (or that person you know) are from the US and were born before 1980. Of course, maybe that’s not the case, but tonsillectomies certainly fit in the category of 20th-century fads, along with Tamagotchis and the Atkins diet. While the procedure is still widely performed today (and for very good reasons), the frequency of tonsillectomies has dropped drastically from mid-20th century rates. In this episode, we explore why tonsillectomies became so popular, when they fell out of favor, and what about tonsils makes them worthy of removal. Tune in to be horrified by ancient tonsil removal techniques, shocked at how long it takes new knowledge to change policies, and appreciative of just how cool tonsils actually are.
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    • 1 hr 34 min
    Ep 133 Parvoviruses: Who let the dogs (and their viruses) out?

    Ep 133 Parvoviruses: Who let the dogs (and their viruses) out?

    This one’s not just for the dogs. It’s also for the cats, the raccoons, the wax moths, the birds, the mice, and so many other critters. Oh, and of course the humans. Even though most of us may be familiar with parvovirus through our canine friends, the world of parvoviruses is much larger. In this episode, we explore that world, focusing first on the biology of these tiny DNA viruses and how they make us sick before tracing the history of their discovery and the pandemic spread of canine parvovirus just a few short decades ago. We are joined by the amazing Dr. Steph Horgan Smith who acts as our veterinary tour guide through the animal world of these viruses and why vaccination against them is so incredibly important. Finally, we round out the episode with some of the latest research on these viruses, featuring some very cool, very promising work on using the dependoparvoviruses as a tool for gene therapy. Tune in to learn where Fifth disease got its name, what role raccoons may have played in the emergence of canine parvovirus, and so much more.
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    • 1 hr 52 min
    Ep 132 Osteogenesis Imperfecta: All bones about it

    Ep 132 Osteogenesis Imperfecta: All bones about it

    Often, the more we learn about a disease, the more we learn about ourselves and the world around us. The story of the genetic disorder osteogenesis imperfecta (OI), colloquially known as brittle bone disease, illustrates this perfectly. As researchers continue to uncover the mechanisms responsible for OI development and progression, the better we understand the varied and crucial roles collagen plays in all parts of our biology. As historians attempt to trace how that knowledge has accumulated over time, the more we can clearly see how science rarely progresses consistently but rather erratically and is prone to interruption. And as we assess where we are with OI treatment and research today, the more apparent the gap is between knowledge and application, and just how critical lived experiences are in understanding a disease. In this episode, we explore these aspects of osteogenesis imperfecta, and we are thrilled to be joined by Natalie Lloyd, who shares her experience with OI as our firsthand account. Natalie is a New York Times bestselling author of novels for young readers, whose recently published award-winning book Hummingbird tells the story of a young girl with OI. Heartwarming, magical, and brilliant, this wonderful book is a must-read. Tune in today!
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    • 1 hr 30 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
15.8K Ratings

15.8K Ratings

CVYBL ,

Long covid

Thank you for covering long covid and now MECFS. I appreciate how in depth you discuss these and also how RESPECTFULLY you covered these illnesses. Thank you!!! From us too sick to advocate for ourselves ❤️‍🩹

Destructive Delilah ,

So fun!

This is definitely my go-to podcast. I love their dynamic so much. I also love that they stay on topic and make it all so interesting and educational. I’ve listened to the Prions episode 3 times! I hope it never ends. Thank you Erins

MeridithCS ,

Informative and helpful

This is my favorite podcast. I love learning the things that science knows ( and doesn’t know!) about different diseases and conditions. Presented well by both hosts.

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