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What it’s like to be able to smell illnesses

What’s it like to be able to smell cancer? Alzheimer’s? Diabetes? Parkinson’s?

When a nurse noticed a change in her husband’s scent, it sent her down an extraordinary path of discovery - that she could smell multiple diseases and conditions.

Meet Joy Milne, and hear from two women who have found different ways of getting through life with highly sensitive senses of smell.

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  • Heather Ream is a writer from East Tennessee, who is also a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)
  • Wendy Helfenbaum is a television producer, translator, journalist, and writer who has an exceptionally sensitive sense of smell
  • Joy Milne is a retired nurse from Perth, Scotland. She can smell Parkinson’s, tuberculosis, Alzheimer's, cancer, and diabetes.

Jessica Severin de Martinez, Catie Talarski, Abe Levine, and Dylan Reyes contributed to this show.

Chion Wolf is the host of Audacious with Chion Wolf on Connecticut Public, featuring conversations with people who have uncommon or misunderstood experiences, conditions, or professions.
Jessica Severin de Martinez is a producer for Audacious with Chion Wolf.
Catie Talarski is Senior Director of Storytelling and Radio Programming at Connecticut Public.