Commentary on "Sedation before ventilator withdrawal.

Tia Powell, Donald S. Kornfeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


In any important article in the field of clinical ethics, the focus should not be on the specific case example, but rather on the issues it presents for thought and discussion. Barbara Springer Edwards and Winston M. Ueno achieve this end admirably. They present a terminally ill patient who requested termination of ventilator support, despite the overwhelming odds that he would die as a result. The authors ask whether or not the physician acted appropriately in accommodating the patient's wish and in sedating him to decrease suffering in his last moments. They present compelling arguments that sedation was warranted in this case. They also note correctly that competent patients have the right to refuse treatment. However, in addition to the question of sedation, this case raises other important issues, specifically those related to pain management and depression in the terminally ill....

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)126-127
Number of pages2
JournalThe Journal of clinical ethics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1991
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Issues, ethics and legal aspects
  • Health(social science)
  • Health Policy


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