Women in Medicine

Katharine Dexter McCormick: The Money Behind the Pill

Katharine McCormick made her mark in two different areas: She was a big part of the movement for women's suffrage in the U.S. And, she was a huge - and for a while, almost entirely forgotten - part of the development of oral contraceptives.

Dr. Virginia Apgar

Dr. Virginia Apgar broke new ground in the fields of obstetrics and anesthesiology in the middle of the 20th century. When babies are born today, one of the tools doctors use to measure whether they're thriving on their own is the Apgar score.

Dr. Vera Peters

Dr. Peters helped revolutionize the treatment of both breast cancer and Hodgkin's lymphoma. But, at the time, her work was largely dismissed. Read the show notes here.

Elizabeth Blackwell, America's First Female M.D.

It's not a story of a person with a childhood dream of pursuing a career that wasn't available to them. Dr. Blackwell had no interest in medicine as a child. But she paved the way for women who came after her and changed the face of medicine in the U.S. Read the show notes for this episode here.

Though she was Canadian, Sarah Emma Edmonds fought for the Union during the Civil War. She adopted the name Franklin Thompson while traveling. Disguised as a man, she enlisted and began a career as a nurse, courier and spy (if you believe her memoir).

Women weren't initially welcome in the Civil War armies, but thousands eventually ended up serving as nurses. We feature five here. Listen in to learn about nurses like Sally Louisa Tompkins, whose hospital became one of the most successful of the war.

In part two of this interview series, Dr. Holly Tucker discusses the research methods behind her new book, "Blood Work: A Tale of Medicine and Murder in the Scientific Revolution." Listen in to learn more about the controversial history of transfusions.

In part one of a special author interview, Dr. Holly Tucker talks about her new book, "Blood Work: A Tale of Medicine and Murder in the Scientific Revolution." Tune in to learn more about the startling history of blood transfusion.

Civil War Medicine: Mary Edwards Walker

When the Civil War began, Mary Edwards Walker sought work as a surgeon. When the Union refused to give her an appointment, she worked as a volunteer. She became the first woman to win a Medal of Honor. Tune in to learn more about Mary Edwards Walker.

Mary Seacole and the Crimean War

When Mary Seacole was born, racism was rife and no formal nursing institutions existed. Tune in to learn how Mary Seacole overcame these obstacles and became one of the world's most recognizable nurses in this episode.