What happens when your medication leaves you diseased? ‘Bed of Lies’ Season 2 investigates a deadly medical scandal
The Telegraph presents “Bed of Lies” Season 2, a documentary series uncovering a scandal that resulted in deaths. A once-considered miracle treatment turned deadly when people contracted AIDS via contaminated medication, and victims were left suffering and wondering how the disease started affecting people, en masse, with hemophilia. Hemophilia is a bleeding disorder where blood does not clot properly.
Among coverups and misleading information, host Cara McGoogan chases stories based on lies in an attempt to find truth. Now in its second season, “Bed of Lies” tells a story that goes beyond medical malpractice, backtracking to a Louisiana prison filled with dangerous lies and the start of many lives lost. Cara investigates if these deaths could have been prevented.
The first episode zones in on two couples with life-altering diagnoses. Clair, Bryan, Frankie, and Joe all had a similar experience. Joe came down with mysterious symptoms where he would pass out at work. He was rushed to the hospital, the doctor ran tests, and he was diagnosed with AIDS. Joe went in for a checkup and also tested positive for the virus. Simultaneously, more people in America and Britain received similar news. They were at a loss as to how they contracted AIDS.
The victims contracted the disease within their homes, disguised as medicine. Science developed a treatment for hemophilia, and patients could treat symptoms from home with a medical synthetic powder made from human plasma, called Factor VIII. This substance contained a protein to help with blood clotting, that hemophiliac patients do not naturally have. Hundreds of people taking Factor VIII tested positive for HIV, and people started to die.
At this time, little was known about AIDS. The media inflamed the situation by writing malicious content and claiming the virus was only contracted by “Haitians, homosexuals, and hemophiliacs.” In the midst of this, actor Rock Hudson died from AIDS and generated unkind press write-ups, making conditions worse for patients due to negative stigmas. The victims reported poor treatment when seeking medical attention.
How does this story trace back to a Louisiana prison? And why did doctors avoid taking measures to stop the disaster from spiraling out of control when they knew all along about the contaminated medication? Tune in on Tuesdays for new episodes this season.
If you’re interested in Cara’s research, check out Season 1 of “Bed of Lies,” a story of love, identity theft, betrayal, and a missing man. All episodes of season one are streaming now.