In recent months there has been considerable discussion on the ethics of using organs from anencephalic babies for transplantation purposes. The heart of an anencephalic in Ireland was so used, but the recipient died very soon after the operation. Since this case came to light the Royal College of Physicians has imposed a ban on the use of these babies as donors while a working party investigates the issues involved.* This article attempts to examine the problem and reaches the conclusion that in practice it is not ethical to use the organs of anencephalics for transplants.
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