Terminal sedation and the "imminence condition"

Journal of Medical Ethics 34 (2):69-72 (2008)
Abstract
“Terminal sedation” refers to the use of sedation as palliation in dying patients with a terminal diagnosis. Although terminal sedation has received widespread legal and ethical justification, the practice remains ethically contentious, particularly as some hold that it foreseeably hastens death. It has been proposed that empirical studies show that terminal sedation does not hasten death, or that even if it may hasten death it does not do so in a foreseeable way. Nonetheless, it is clear that providing terminal sedation in combination with the withholding or withdrawing of life-prolonging treatments such as fluid and nutrition can foreseeably hasten death significantly—what is here called early terminal sedation . There are ethical justifications for the use of sedation in palliative care and thus it would seem that ETS is an ethically and legally acceptable practice. However, what emerges from the literature is the repeated assertion that terminal sedation must be restricted to use in imminently dying patients—the “imminence condition”—and that therefore ETS is unacceptable. This restriction has taken on greater significance with the trend of palliative care to include the care of patients who are not imminently dying. This paper proposes to show that although there is widespread intuitive support for the imminence condition, it does not follow from the justifications for sedation as palliation, and that explicit arguments for the imminence condition are needed
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 13,405
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Similar books and articles
Ben A. Rich (2012). Terminal Suffering and the Ethics of Palliative Sedation. Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 21 (01):30-39.
Allison McIntyre (2004). The Double Life of Double Effect. Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 25 (1):61-74.
W. S., H. A. & E. Kemmann (1998). Discussion. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 29 (4):639-652.
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2010-08-24

Total downloads

15 ( #125,250 of 1,689,874 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #111,786 of 1,689,874 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.