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Dr. Death

Author: Wondery

Subscribed: 345,418Played: 1,165,279


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.

14 Episodes
Comments (261)

No Comment

The failures of the system in Texas and Dr Deaths residency IMHO border on criminal. Each and every system that could of did something and didn't are culpable for the injuries caused. The residency program holds the most culpability because they passed him along. Less than 100 surgeries total. From what I understand that total is combined from residency throughout his private practice. This in an of its self is absolutely undeniably the single most aggregiss thing I have ever heard of.

Mar 24th

Dave O'Doherty

I wonder if any new episodes will appear here or am I just being strung along so they can advertise new crap...

Mar 21st

Mike Wang

OMG!They should be imprisoned.

Mar 19th


Just way to many interruptions and commercials.

Mar 19th

Ati Otieno

This was sooooo good! Intense but really really well done!

Mar 13th

Taylor Vernon

Not sure why, but wasn't a fan of this series

Mar 13th

Kawaii Biscuit Boi


Mar 13th

Tonya Free

Columbus Ohio....Mount Carmel has been KILLING patience by overdosing!!!

Mar 6th

Yvette Bunch

Excellent. It makes my job more meaningful, as I work in Quality at a hospital. We use Six- Sigma- Lean methodology to drill down to quality inidcators that are fed into a physician profile. That aids administration to make decisions as to whether a doctor gets privileges with us. We often do tracers and show up in surgery. Many times the surgeon doesn't notice we have slipped in. There are several things we look.for. In my opinion if a physician doesn't use standards outlined by their Society, the AABB, Joint Commission, the doctor should be removed. Example: many commercial airlines require written, oral, simulator and actual fly testing on a yearly basis in the US. (not the joke cme-that even I can pass as an EMT)).They do not allow pilots to break their rules. They do not follow rules, they get a warning. Persist in bad behavior, you are pulled back out for testing, oral, written, simulator and check ride. They fail, they are fired. They go back flying and persist in the bad behavior, they are fired There is built in the system high accountability, such as cockpit recording. CRM helped drive safety. This needs to be taught and adoptef in hospitals. Aviation is at six sigma. Hospitals are at two to three. Medical errors is the third leading cause of death. The medical literature estimates 60-70 percent of blood transfusion is unnecessary. Blood covers a multitude of sins! The public needs to step up to the plate and push their legislative branches to add levels of protection. A central database like the FBI controls needs to be set up for healthcare providers. This will catch bad doctors escaping responsibility by moving state to state. Read"Why hospitals should fly"

Mar 4th

Andrew J Cipriano

I live in Dallas Texas my mom had a spinal surgery done around the time this man was performing luckily not by him however when they talk about Baylor plano they don't mention that that's a very underfunded hospital at least now days fining that hospital could very well make a bed situation worse

Mar 3rd

Shannon Shilling Dorris

As a surgical technologist I am freaked out about this story. I thoroughly enjoy spine and as I listened to the patients injured by him it brought tears to my eyes. How awful, what a piece of crap.

Feb 27th

Glenn Swift

I've been really impressed with the Wondery Podcasts. High production values, editing, sound design and sound mixing - for me that sets them apart. Better than a lot of the paid content on audible. Dr Death is a fascinating case and you can see how other producers might have been tempted to try get about 10 episodes out of it and drag it out. But this was driven story telling that zips along in its six episodes.

Feb 25th

Samantha Elizabeth

Amazing. Terrifying. Eye opening. sadly not surprising. Thank you for this.

Feb 22nd

Derek X

amazing how cowardly some of these people are. to not say anything about this guy for fear of being sued.

Feb 11th

Justin Jt Moore

This podcast is BONKERS!! Wow

Feb 9th

Brenda Curtis

Great Podcast!

Feb 8th

Libra Moon

As someone with metalwork on their spine, this is a very uncomfortable listen! Fascinating though.

Feb 4th

Megan Carnahan

lo e d. ps 0 1naq0 😗 d

Feb 3rd

Susan Petersen-Harbert

1 qwq

Feb 2nd

Jacey Grant Next Dr. Death series?!?

Jan 29th
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