Searching for a diagnosis

Searching for a diagnosis

How scientists are untangling the mystery of developmental disorders There are between 6,000 and 8,000 known rare diseases, many of which affect children’s development. One pioneering project is showing how, 17 years since the first draft of the human genome, our...
The Alzheimer’s enigma

The Alzheimer’s enigma

The cause of Alzheimer’s disease has troubled the science world’s best detectives. Michael Regnier asks: can such a mystery really be solved if we gather enough clues? The King of Crete demanded that, to atone for the death of his son, the city of Athens send him...
How much does it hurt?

How much does it hurt?

Aching, throbbing, searing, excruciating – pain is difficult to describe and impossible to see. So how can doctors measure it? John Walsh finds out about new ways of assessing the agony. Listen to or download an audiobook of this story...
Psychosis in Parkinson’s

Psychosis in Parkinson’s

Now we can treat it without making other symptoms worse Half of people with Parkinson’s disease experience hallucinations, paranoia and delusions. Mary O’Hara reports on a new hope. One night without warning, Jay Sagen leapt from his bed and grabbed the quilt, then...
Healing the divide

Healing the divide

Every day, hundreds of Israeli volunteers drive ill Palestinians from the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to hospitals in Israel. Shaul Adar joins them on the road and learns why they see their neighbourly help as a step on the journey to peaceful coexistence. At 6.30am,...
How should you grieve?

How should you grieve?

The pain and sorrow of bereavement is supposed to get easier to bear as time passes. But what if it doesn’t? Psychiatrists call it ‘complicated grief’ – and it can be treated. Andrea Volpe reports. After Stephanie Muldberg’s 13-year-old son Eric died of...
Life with Li–Fraumeni syndrome

Life with Li–Fraumeni syndrome

Sue Armstrong meets Pan Pantziarka, whose son George had Li–Fraumeni syndrome and lived with cancer from early childhood. One of the bleakest moments in Pan Pantziarka’s long struggle with Li–Fraumeni syndrome was when doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London...
Breaking bad news

Breaking bad news

How do you tell someone that they’re seriously ill, or even dying? Chrissie Giles explores how doctors learn and how they deal with the stress and trauma, for both their patients and themselves. Listen to or download an audiobook of this story...
The man with the golden blood

The man with the golden blood

Meet the donors, patients, doctors and scientists involved in the complex global network of rare – and very rare – blood. Listen to or download an audiobook of this story on SoundCloud and iTunes. His doctor drove him over the border. It was quicker that way: if the...
Raising my HIV family

Raising my HIV family

When one Romanian doctor became ‘father’ to 16 HIV-positive orphans in 1999, many thought there was no hope for them – or for the thousands of other children infected. What followed was something of a miracle. Geta Roman tells their story. Dr Paul Marinescu has chosen...