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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 57

of 'Palliative care: Medically futile and potentially inappropriate therapies of questionable benefit'

57
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Physician Power to Declare Death by Neurologic Criteria Threatened.
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Lewis A, Pope TM
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Neurocrit Care. 2017;26(3):446.
 
BACKGROUND: Three recent lawsuits that address declaration of brain death (BD) garnered significant media attention and threaten to limit physician power to declare BD.
METHODS: We discuss these cases and their consequences including: the right to refuse an apnea test, accepted medical standards for declaration of BD, and the irreversibility of BD.
RESULTS: These cases warrant discussion because they threaten to: limit physicians' power to determine death; incite families to seek injunctions to continue organ support after BD; and force hospitals to dispense valuable resources to dead patients in lieu of patients with reparable illnesses or injuries.
CONCLUSIONS: Physicians, philosophers, religious officials, ethicists, and lawyers must work together to address these issues and educate both the public and medical community about BD.
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Division of Neurocritical Care, Departments of Neurology and Neurosurgery, NYU Langone Medical Center, 530 First Avenue HCC-5A, New York, NY, 10016, USA. ariane.kansas.lewis@gmail.com.
PMID