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Dr. Death

Author: Wondery

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We’re at our most vulnerable when we go to our doctors. We trust the person at the other end of that scalpel. We trust the hospital. We trust the system.


Christopher Duntsch was a neurosurgeon who radiated confidence. He claimed he was the best in Dallas. If you had back pain, and had tried everything else, Dr. Duntsch could give you the spine surgery that would take your pain away.


But soon his patients started to experience complications, and the system failed to protect them. Which begs the question: who - or what - is that system meant to protect?


From Wondery, the network behind the hit podcast Dirty John, DR. DEATH is a story about a charming surgeon, 33 patients and a spineless system. Reported and hosted by Laura Beil.

16 Episodes
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Introducing Detective Trapp

Introducing Detective Trapp

2019-11-1900:08:44

Anaheim investigator Julissa Trapp is not like other detectives. She’s the only woman on the homicide squad, and a skilled chameleon: undercover cop in vice stings, crime-scene commander, patient confidante of killers. A master interrogator, she invokes her personal experience – and deepest griefs – as a tool to elicit confessions. When a young woman’s body is found at a trash-sorting plant, Trapp learns the murder may be linked to the disappearance of three other women in nearby Santa Ana. Trapp embarks on a dark journey that brings her face to face with a man who takes “a little piece of her soul.” Listen now at wondery.fm/drdeathDT
Introducing Hunting Warhead

Introducing Hunting Warhead

2019-11-0500:31:494

A new investigative series from CBC Podcasts and the Norwegian newspaper VG. Hunting Warhead follows an international team of police officers as they attempt to track down the people behind a massive child-abuse site on the dark web. Listen at cbc.ca/huntingwarhead
In Wondery's new series Bad Batch, host Laura Beil of Dr. Death investigates the multi-billion dollar underregulated industry of stem cell therapy where greed and desperation collide. When a group of patients wind up in a Texas hospital in critical condition, the trail leads back to one stem cell company and its charismatic CEO. What happens when a supposed miracle cure leaves you worse off than before? Listen to Bad Batch at wondery.fm/BadBatchPod
For most of his life, Jeffrey Epstein was a mystery — who he was, how he made his money, and how he got away with horrific crimes for so many years. The Mysterious Mr. Epstein explores how Epstein was able to use his wealth to buy status and credibility, to buy power, and ultimately to buy himself freedom from justice. From the network that brought you Dirty John. Listen now at wondery.fm/TMME
Dr. Death Goes Global

Dr. Death Goes Global

2019-08-1500:17:2815

Subscribe today at the links below:Germanhttp://wondery.fm/drtodFrenchhttp://wondery.fm/drlamortLatin American Spanishhttp://wondery.fm/drmuertePortuguesehttp://wondery.fm/drmorte Castilian Spanishhttp://wondery.fm/drmuertesp Koreanhttp://wondery.fm/drdeathkorMandarinhttp://wondery.fm/drdeathchi
Breaking News | 10

Breaking News | 10

2018-12-1300:18:5983

The judges reviewing Christopher Duntsch’s appeal have reached a decision. On the day of the decision, Laura Beil goes to the Dallas District Attorney’s office to speak with prosecutors Michelle Shugart and Jaclyn Lambert about the judges' decision.To read Laura Beil’s article about the ruling, and a copy, go to Wondery.com/DrDeath.
“One Great Man”  | 9

“One Great Man” | 9

2018-11-1300:28:54105

You may remember the woman in the infomercial about Dr. Duntsch who admiringly calls him “one great man” and claims “he’ll fix you.” Laura Beil wasn’t able to get in touch with her when she first reported the series. She guessed that the woman must have been a paid actress, or perhaps even the rare patient who had a good result with Dr. Duntsch. But then the woman in the video reached out after hearing her voice in ”Dr. Death.” And the real story turned out to be much stranger. In this special episode, we also hear from a juror who helped deliver the verdict in the trial of Christopher Duntsch. Looking for the best sheets, ever? Get $20 off AND free shipping on your order by going to brooklinen.com and entering promo code death at checkout. Or maybe you're looking for plush towels? A new throw blanket? Yeah, they have that too.
Interview | 8

Interview | 8

2018-10-0900:27:46138

This series has generated a lot of questions and comments from listeners for host and reporter Laura Beil. In this special interview episode, Laura talks with David Brown (from the podcast “Business Wars”) about a number of topics that have intrigued listeners, like how Duntsch could have performed less than a hundred surgeries during his medical training. She addresses speculation that Duntsch may have suffered traumatic brain injury from playing football in high school. And she teases the real story behind the “patient” featured in that Best Docs infomercial.Dr. Death is presented by Bad Times at the El Royale, in theaters October 12.Check out the trailer at elroyalemovie.comOther sponsors include:Zip Recruiter - Try ZipRecruiter FOR FREE at ziprecruiter.com/death Bombas - Save 20% by visiting bombas.com/death and entering the offer death in the checkout code spaceHelix Sleep - Get up to $125 off your mattress at helixsleep.com/death. Audible - Start a 30-day trial and get your first audiobook free by going to audible.com/death or by texting DEATH to500-500Brooklinen - Get $20 off AND free shipping by going to brooklinen.com and entering promo code deathSimplisafe - Visit simplisafe.com/doctor and start protecting your home today the right way
Update | 7

Update | 7

2018-10-0200:27:32213

Reporter Laura Beil has a few updates on the story of Christopher Duntsch since the series was first released. She attends an appeals hearing for Duntsch's case, discusses Baylor-Plano Hospital’s response -- and the mysterious case of the disappearing billboard.Subscribe to Business Wars hereDr. Death merchandise is now available! 15% of proceeds from each sale will go to the nonprofit newsroom ProPublica and their effort to spotlight wrongdoings in the healthcare industry. Shop tees, hoodies, & mugs at wondery.com/store.Support us by supporting our sponsors!Simplisafe - Visit simplisafe.com/doctor and start protecting your home today the right wayZip Recruiter - Try ZipRecruiter FOR FREE at ziprecruiter.com/death Bombas - Save 20% by visiting bombas.com/death and entering the offer death in the checkout code spaceHelix Sleep - Get up to $125 off your mattress at helixsleep.com/death. Audible - Start a 30-day trial and get your first audiobook free by going to audible.com/death or by texting DEATH to500-500Brooklinen - Get $20 off AND free shipping by going to brooklinen.com and entering promo code death
Closure | 6

Closure | 6

2018-09-2500:41:25375

Michelle Shughart has her work cut out for her, since no doctor has ever been prosecuted for crimes committed while practicing medicine. His patient’s lives would never be the same, but what would what would be the fate of Dr. Duntsch? The people in Dallas struggle to understand what drove him to do such horrible things. And what happens if the system faces another “Dr. Death.” Subscribe to Dr Death on Apple, Spotify, NPR One, Stitcher or sign up for email updates at wondery.com to stay up to date about future episodes.Please tell us what you think about our show and help us by answering a few questions at wondery.com/surveyHave a tip for us? Send us an email at tips@wondery.comSupport us by supporting our sponsors!Zip Recruiter - Try ZipRecruiter FOR FREE at ziprecruiter.com/death Bombas - Save 20% by visiting bombas.com/death and entering the offer death in the checkout code spaceHelix Sleep - Get up to $125 off your mattress at helixsleep.com/death. Audible - Start a 30-day trial and get your first audiobook free by going to audible.com/death or by texting DEATH to 500-500Brooklinen - Get $20 off AND free shipping by going to brooklinen.com and entering promo code deathSimplisafe - Visit simplisafe.com/doctor and start protecting your home today the right way
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Comments (346)

Linda Sue

This podcast was put together brilliantly, with hard facts about a dark secret most know nothing about. I worked for a large, world renowned Neurosurgical group in AZ. when I inquired why the employees were not drug tested I was told by HR that the doctors are also employees and would have to be tested, and they refused. This should be mandatory for anyone in healthcare. I now work as a DEA COMPLIANCE INVESTIGATOR and my job is to investigate doctors and pharmacists. I had no idea a doctor could be arrested, put in prison for molesting and or raping children, get out and return to a job treating children! CA and FL are the worst states for covering up medical crimes. You won't find out if your doctor is a pedophile on the medical board sites. you have to look that up separate! WTF? Thank you for an extraordinary story to open our eyes.

Nov 14th
Reply

Brittany Storms

Baylor wrote a statement that Patient Care and Trustworthy Care is their top priority and that is why they can't talk about Dr. Duntsch... how about transparency? If you want your patients to trust you, be honest with them. "We screwed up. We didn't manage this surgeon or his wake of disaster." Your credibility would increase more than silent ambiguity.

Nov 12th
Reply

Nicole Heath

A coworker told me about this podcast. I really enjoy murder mystery crimes. usually one that make you wonder if the one convicted committed the crime, but this got my attention quick. Hard to hear the doctors name, but that is Google is for!!

Nov 7th
Reply

Britney Lee Elizabeth Smith

Good lord. Glad I live in Canada 🇨🇦

Nov 7th
Reply

Rosa Williams

Why has no one gone after the school he "graduated" from? He should have never had a license to practice surgery in the first place.

Nov 5th
Reply

Deborah

Love this Podcast!!!

Oct 31st
Reply

Heather Paxton

Amazing and entertaining podcast. Love Wondery

Oct 30th
Reply (1)

Hana Shim

great podcast! no unnecessary comments and distracting reactions! draws you right into the show.

Oct 25th
Reply

Alessandra Laurent

My favorite podcast. I recommend it to anyone who might like something a little dark, suspenseful, and educational about the world we live in.

Oct 3rd
Reply

Nancy W

First Dr's diagnosis for Barry: "exercise and lose weight"... nope, a "quick fix" surgery of the SPINE was the path taken. What could be more simple than a prescription of: "eat less, move more"?

Sep 28th
Reply (1)

Pejman Torabi

so so

Sep 20th
Reply

Randilizm

Great podcast of a crazy story.

Sep 3rd
Reply

John Keogh

I just love this podcast

Aug 29th
Reply

Jim Thornburg

I can't listen passed episode 4.

Aug 28th
Reply (4)

Lori Levotch

Totally enjoyed the story. Terrified that this could happened.

Aug 26th
Reply

Lee Lee Cherry

That last guy at the end, one of his patients that says he has empathy toward Dr Duntsch regardless of the fact he ruined his life is incredible...takes a pretty remarkable person to not harbor anger and resentment - bless you Mr

Aug 6th
Reply (1)

Nancy Loomis

I guess I read the answer to this somewhere, but what happened between med school, where they said he performed well (didn't they?) and the first documented botched surgery? No one goes from A to Z without anything in between. Did someone in this story mention (among many other known & possible contributing factors) that he may have had a brain tumor?

Aug 5th
Reply (1)

Roisin Scully

Worth listening to.

Aug 1st
Reply

Glenda Brearley

want free crime podcasts

Jul 6th
Reply

Owen Risto

Shoulda put that asshole down

Jul 6th
Reply
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