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Old 08-19-2012, 09:48 PM   #31
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I have mixed feelings about Euthanasia, but I came here to say that DNRs confuse the hell out of me.

My grandmother has horribly bad emphysema and is in and out of the hospital on a fairly regular basis. She has been placed on a respirator multiple times, in spite of her DNR. I thought they weren't allowed to do that?

The fact is, I'm glad for it, because she has come back every time and every time has recovered to the point of being able to go home.

I hate living in this constant loop of her getting sick/being on the respirator/recovering, but she wants to live and it means I get more time with her, but it get so scared and confused because of the DNR.
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Old 08-20-2012, 05:40 AM   #32
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A DNR at least in the UK basically means you will not carry out CPR on a person who has sustained cardiac or respiratory arrest (Though if I remember correctly our policy on it is based off a US one). It only really concerns the moment of death and that you will not attempt to get them back.

So in the case of your grandmother the exacerbation of her emphysema is something that is short term wise easily treatable and she can be returned to her baseline of fitness before the exacerbation occurred, so very aggressive, active treatment will be given.

What DNRs generally stop at least here is people being escalated to intensive care. What usually happens on my ward is that they may be DNR but we will escalate the care to ICU levels without actually sending them to ICU, so there will be multiple drips, respirators, strong and horrible medications etc (from my own personal perspective it makes life hell on the ward as I am generally looking after 8 patients and if one requires almost ICU levels of care, the rest tend to get neglected).

The worst thing is seeing families come in with loved ones multiple times to the hospital towards the end of life, with the expectation 'is it going to be this time'. Then get sent home again only to repeat it a few weeks later. It is a kind of mental torture, anyway you have my best wishes for your gran.

Just in reference to Anitram, we do have the ability to create Advanced Care Plans where a patient can specify what sort of treatment can be given when they reach the end of life, but most do not know their rights regarding this and are generally completely unaware. Doctors never ever raise this with the patient and I have only ever seen one in effect once in 4 years throughout my training and now as a qualified nurse and even then it was disregarded due to some missing documentation.
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Old 08-20-2012, 07:14 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AchtungBono

I am so very very sorry for this poor man's condition but I believe that, instead of wanting to end his life, perhaps he could use his circumstances to help other people in his condition - like Christopher Reeve did.
The article said that his mind isn't affected and his condition isn't terminal so I believe that he should fight on.

.
It's none of your business, so it doesn't matter what you think he should do with his life
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Old 08-20-2012, 07:16 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by AchtungBono
.

All that being said......if he wants to end his life then he should just do it himself
He can't. That's the whole point
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Old 08-20-2012, 08:51 AM   #35
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I believe a DNR means they won't use CPR or AED to bring someone back. If she goes in sick and they put her on a respirator, that's different. I suppose she could refuse treatment but that would be different than the DNR. If she went in not breathing and her heart had stopped, *then* the DNR applies.
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Old 08-20-2012, 12:09 PM   #36
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Thanks LJT and Lies. That makes a lot of sense and is what my brain was vaguely assigning was the vcr, so I thank you for the knowledge. It actually helps a lot.
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Old 08-21-2012, 02:29 AM   #37
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It's none of your business, so it doesn't matter what you think he should do with his life
Hi Jive Turkey,

You're right - it ISN'T my business thank G-d almighty.....

We're just having a discussion and I'm voicing my opinion - and that DOES matter on a message board, just like yours does,
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Old 08-21-2012, 02:34 AM   #38
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Hi AchtungBono. Always so polite!

I guess my point is just that it's very patronizing to say to someone so desperate to be relieved of their suffering "no, I think you should do this with your life". Your opinion does matter here. But in the real life situation, no one's should matter but the person suffering
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Old 08-21-2012, 03:58 AM   #39
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Hi AchtungBono. Always so polite!

I guess my point is just that it's very patronizing to say to someone so desperate to be relieved of their suffering "no, I think you should do this with your life". Your opinion does matter here. But in the real life situation, no one's should matter but the person suffering

Gee...thanks....

Again, you're right - ultimately it is no one's concern what he does.
In any case, I don't mean to be patronizing - I do deeply sympathize with him and hope that somehow his suffering will end - hopefully by treatment.
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Old 08-21-2012, 08:49 AM   #40
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It is curious that we are all in favour of allowing our pets a dignified death when they are suffering beyond comprehension and without any chance for improvement, but when it comes to humans, many of us totally lose all rationality with respect to this debate.
Well, I guess there's the fact that ending an animal's life, for a wide variety of reasons - food, population control, because the pet has become dangerous etc. - is a whole lot more easily accepted in our society.

Euthanasia for me is one of those impossible issues; when I read about the individual cases and people's suffering it just kills your heart, but at the same time the idea of it actually being legalised creeps the hell out of me.
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Old 08-21-2012, 09:43 AM   #41
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I guess I can't really use the pet analogy after all because even as a dog owner/lover/fancier/competitor, I still am outspoken on the issue of pets being property and not "persons" with rights, but that's a loaded topic....
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Old 08-21-2012, 11:48 AM   #42
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Well, I guess there's the fact that ending an animal's life, for a wide variety of reasons - food, population control, because the pet has become dangerous etc. - is a whole lot more easily accepted in our society.
Sure, but I mean specifically in the context of pets who are suffering because they have a terminal illness or have reached end-of-life. The reasons often cited by pet owners are (i) that the wish to spare their pet any further pain and (ii) they want their pet to die with dignity.

It is interesting to me that as a society, particularly in the west, we value individuality and choice - to live our lives the way we see fit. That's why you no longer have defined gender roles and expectations the way you did 200 years ago. But when it comes to death, there is to be no choice. We can live our lives with dignity but we can't end them in dignity. Not saying it's right or wrong one way or another, but it's always been nonsensical to me.
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Old 08-21-2012, 04:57 PM   #43
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Because in euthanasia ending our lives on our terms implicates another person.

That's what makes it complicated.
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Old 08-21-2012, 05:02 PM   #44
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Because in euthanasia ending our lives on our terms implicates another person.

That's what makes it complicated.
That's not really what makes it complicated IMO, because you are never forcing anyone to perform an act. You will always be able to find medical professionals who are in favour of euthanasia to treat those patients. If you take the view that the involvement of third parties is what complicates matters, then why not take that view in respect of abortion?

What complicates it are the regulations that would have to be put in place to ensure that the person who is making the decision to end their life is making it of sound mind, without coercion, not under duress or suffering from depression - in other words, you have fully informed consent.
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Old 08-22-2012, 09:04 AM   #45
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.......his suffering is over.

Let us hope that this case will raise awareness and spur the medical community onwards to finding a treatment for this horrendous condition.

Rest in peace.....


Paralyzed UK man dies after losing assisted-suicide case - CNN.com
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