Neonatal extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), a technology for the treatment of respiratory failure in newborns, is used as a case study to examine statistical and ethical aspects of clinical trials and to illustrate a proposed 'ethics of evidence', an approach to medical uncertainty within the context of contemporary biomedical ethics. Discussion includes the twofold aim of the ethics of evidence: to clarify the role of uncertainty and scientific evidence in medical decision-making, and to call attention to the need to confront the irreducible nature of uncertainty.
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