A patient with end-stage motor neurone disease was admitted for hospice care with worsening bulbar symptoms. Although he initially walked onto the ward he became very distressed and asked for sedation. After much discussion, this man was deeply sedated, and after some harrowing days, died. Was it right to provide terminal sedation? What should the threshold be for such treatment? How should our personal reservations affect how we approach the distressed patient in an end-of-life situation?
- Attitudes towards death
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.
Linked article 100278.
Competing interests None.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Read the full text or download the PDF:
Other content recommended for you
- Terminal sedation and the “imminence condition”
- Internists’ attitudes towards terminal sedation in end of life care
- Expanded terminal sedation in end-of-life care
- Approaches to suffering at the end of life: the use of sedation in the USA and Netherlands
- The role of the principle of double effect in ethics education at US medical schools and its potential impact on pain management at the end of life
- Double effect: a useful rule that alone cannot justify hastening death
- Weakening the ethical distinction between euthanasia, palliative opioid use and palliative sedation
- Distinction between euthanasia and palliative sedation is clear-cut
- Does the doctrine of double effect apply to the prescription of barbiturates? Syme vs the Medical Board of Australia
- Medical murder in Belgium and the Netherlands