Are We Allowed to Discontinue Medical Treatment in This Child?

  • Leeuwenburgh-Pronk W
  • Miller-Smith L
  • Forman V
 et al. 
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Abstract

a abstract One of the most difficult ethical dilemmas in pediatrics today arises when a child has complex chronic conditions that are not curable and cause discomfort with no prospect of any improvement on quality of life. In the context of medical futility, it is harmful to prolong medical treatment. The question is: How can medical treatment be discontinued when the child is not dependent on mechanical ventilation or ICU treatment? What is the appropriate palliative care and does it justify the use of sedatives or analgesics if this also might shorten life? One of the most difficult ethical dilemmas in pediatrics today arises when a child has complex chronic conditions that are not curable and cause discomfort with no prospect of any improvement on quality of life. In the context of medical futility, it is harmful to prolong medical treatment. The question is: How can medical treatment be discontinued when the patient is not dependent on mechanical ventilation or ICU treatment? What is considered proper palliative care and does it justify the use of sedatives or analgesics if this also might shorten life?

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Authors

  • W. G. Leeuwenburgh-Pronk

  • L. Miller-Smith

  • V. Forman

  • J. D. Lantos

  • D. Tibboel

  • C. Buysse

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