Serial Productions to launch new podcast on women’s pain

Five-part show is based on case of pain medication theft at Yale Fertility Center

Serial Productions is launching a new podcast investigating the way women’s pain is viewed by healthcare professionals, the company has announced.

The five-part podcast series, The Retrievals, specifically looks at a group of women who reported severe pain after going to the Yale Fertility Center for egg retrieval procedures. The patients in question say that their complaints were repeatedly dismissed - until it was discovered that a nurse at the clinic had been stealing pain medication and replacing it with saline.

The series, which debuts on all podcast platforms on 29 July, is hosted by Susan Burton, who is also an editor for the New York Times’ popular podcast This American Life. Serial Productions was purchased by the New York Times in 2020, and has gone on to produce hit shows such as The Coldest Case In Laramie for the publication.

"In The Retrievals, Susan Burton takes on a question I've always wanted to explore: Why do we not take women's pain more seriously?" says Julie Snyder, executive editor of Serial Productions. "What happened to the patients in this story is horrible. But how each of them made sense of it - both before they knew the source of their pain, and after they learned the truth - is fascinating and so illuminating."

The New York Times also launched its own audio journalism app last month, giving subscribers to the brand’s news service access to exclusive audio and full catalogues of all its hit shows.

Medical crimes and conspiracies are becoming increasingly popular subjects for true-crime podcasts looking to get away from the traditional fare of serial killers and cults; YouTube and TikTok creator MrBallen announced a new show, MrBallen’s Medical Mysteries, at The Podcast Show in London last month, and the hosts of RedHanded launched a new investigative podcast earlier this year, focused on a conwoman who claimed to have shamanic healing powers.