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Ten Drugs

How Plants, Powders, and Pills Have Shaped the History of Medicine
Narrated by: Angelo Di Loreto
Length: 8 hrs and 39 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (41 ratings)
Regular price: $24.95
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Publisher's Summary

Behind every landmark drug is a story. It could be an oddball researcher’s genius insight, a catalyzing moment in geopolitical history, a new breakthrough technology, or an unexpected but welcome side effect discovered during clinical trials. Piece together these stories, as Thomas Hager does in this remarkable, century-spanning history, and you can trace the evolution of our culture and the practice of medicine.   

Beginning with opium, the “joy plant,” which has been used for 10,000 years, Hager tells a captivating story of medicine. His subjects include the largely forgotten female pioneer who introduced smallpox inoculation to Britain, the infamous knockout drops, the first antibiotic, which saved countless lives, the first antipsychotic, which helped empty public mental hospitals, Viagra, statins, and the new frontier of monoclonal antibodies. This is a deep, wide-ranging, and wildly entertaining book.

©2019 Thomas Hager (P)2019 Audible, Inc.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Engrossing to physicians & lay persons alike

As a physician, a scientist, and an all around nerd, my Audible library vacillates between SciFi and Historical non-fiction. Although this book firmly resides in the latter category, I found it completely captivating and engrossing more akin to a good drama. For the most part, the book comes off like a PBS documentary in its audiobook narration, but it is structured more like a dramatic story with you (or maybe I should say "humankind") positioned as the protagonist of this historical exploration drama. Thomas Hagar has done an excellent job in turning what could have been a very dry topic full of dates, names and anecdotal stories, into more of a first person exploration of the topic. I have at least a dozen titles in my Audible library on the topic of science and medicine, and "Ten Drugs" has instantly shot to the top of my list of favorites (in that category). It is easy to listen to, easy to digest, and ultimately very informative (and I'm pretty sure you'll find yourself bring up something you learned from this book the next time you're out with friends).

13 of 14 people found this review helpful

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Enjoyable and Informative

Really enjoying this book. It is quite engaging despite the subject matter being entirely non-fiction. Love the narrator too, he reminds me of a radio drama narrator.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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I was hooked

Fantastic book! I’m a pharmacist and I couldn’t get enough of the back stories on many of these world changing drugs!

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Interesting book!

This was great! They managed to make this book interesting and alive! Careful tho,you might learn something!