s2d synopsis

As one part of a multi-platform advocacy project, Sick to Death! was born from filmmaker Maggie Hadleigh-West’s life-long experience with thyroid disease and tells the universal story of day-to-day life with chronic illness, it’s collision with medical corruption which hinders healing – and seeks medical justice for millions of individuals worldwide.

“Once you turn your attention to thyroid disease, you’ll understand that everywhere you look, someone you know or love is suffering from this illness and its myriad of symptoms. Even more frightening, this disease is the undercurrent of many other commonplace “illnesses” whose root causes are not being treated.

And then there is systemic suppression of pre-existing medical information, including: recognition of obvious physical symptoms, which used to be commonplace knowledge and is no longer taught, published medical textbooks that thoroughly explore thyroid disease and its related illnesses that are no longer utilized, hundreds of studies that have been conducted but are ignored, tests that are rarely utilized which more accurately detect the disease, and a century-old naturally derived medication that is available-yet denied to patients. And all of this suppression is done in the name of commerce.

Our job in Sick to Death!, is to bring awareness of these issues to the public, expose the problems that surround this epidemic and hold accountable the industry that is thwarting the health of millions of people worldwide.” – Maggie Hadleigh-West, Director of Sick to Death!, Social Justice Activist, Award-Winning Filmmaker & 2013 Guggenheim Award Winner


In the feature-length documentary, Sick to Death!, filmmaker Maggie Hadleigh-West exposes her own disturbing, yet determined 30-year struggle to regain her spiraling health. After seeing hundreds of doctors who either disregarded her symptoms, misdiagnosed or under-treated her, Maggie discovers that her thyroid problem was a fully understood medical issue as early as the 1940’s, but today leaves more than 59 million people sick and suffering in the US – many of them are undiagnosed.

At once a deeply intimate portrait and a rousing invitation to seize life and health to the fullest, Sick to Death! will invite audiences to turn their diagnoses into a call to arms.