eLetters

145 e-Letters

published between 2004 and 2007

  • The new Italian law on assisted reproduction technology (Law 40/2004): A different view
    Andrea Dovio

    Dear Editor,

    Fineschi et al. have recently commented on the recent Italian law on assisted reproductive technology.[1] The Authors recognize that, with respect to the previous completely uncontrolled situation, the law represents a true step forward, by granting both better protection of the rights of the children born through ART and necessary control of ART centres. The Authors accurately describe the contents...

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  • The double standard for male and female suffering
    Michael Glass

    Dear Editors,

    Fox and Thomson found it "striking" that male and female genital cutting are treated so very differently in law. One explanation for this is that men are expected to endure pain whereas women should be sheltered and protected.

    Such an assertion is easy to dismiss as academic theorising. However, the effect of this cultural blindness can be demonstrated in the reports of the Sydney Morning H...

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  • Is brain death really death
    Ari R Joffe

    Dear Editor

    Some points made by Appel in the recent essay “Defining death: when physicians and families differ [1]” merit comment.

    First, it is stated that critics of brain death (BD) are most significantly in Japan and in certain religious groups. However, there is a long list of secular commentators who point out the many problems with the BD criterion of death.[2-11]

    Second, there seems t...

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  • Response to Tsai
    Beverly B. Nuckols

    Dear Editor

    The discussion of Global Medical Ethics, by D F-C Tsai, “Human embryonic stem cell research debates: a Confucian argument" (1), fails to justify the gradualist view of human personhood.

    He begins with a list of flawed arguments concerning the current status of the human embryo which fail in the following ways:

    1. Many women do undergo hormonal support of early pregnancy, for th...

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  • Re: Boo to circumcision
    David Smith

    Dear Editor

    Allen B Shaw suggests that individuals commenting on the BMA Guidance on male circumcision should declare if they are bereft of, or the proud possessors of a prepuce. He also says that 'surely there must be some bold spirits among the circumcised, articulate enough to protest about the violation of their own rights in childhood. Yet no sound is heard.'

    First therefore I will declare that I...

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  • Interests and rights
    Nereo Zamperetti

    Dear Editor,

    The paper of K. Devolder[1] is very interesting and stimulating.

    Unfortunately, the author takes for granted some value premises, which are not so widely accepted.

    The first one is that embryos are just lumps of cells, biological matter without any dignity apart from being of some utility to us. If this is true, the consequences are obvious. Their coming to life will be justified only...

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  • Hurrah for circumcision
    Allen B Shaw

    Dear Editor

    I am delighted that Trevor Perry agrees that the debate about the medical aspects of male circumcision is not closed, because most correspondents think that it is.

    One correspondent argues that removal of the richly innervated prepuce delays ejaculation. Now rapid ejaculation may have had evolutionary benefit, when wild animals or rivals often interrupted coitus. In more civilised times we wo...

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  • Re: Boo to circumcision
    Trevor T Perry

    Dear Editor

    Allen Shaw's suggestion, that Fox and Thomson have made an "unwise" proposal in urging legal sanctions against male circumcision, is poorly founded.

    His first premise is muddled. In hypothetical language, Shaw suggests that the presence or absence of an author's prepuce "may" lead papers to be "rationalisations of emotional attitudes." Primarily, this argument should be discounted becaus...

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  • Evidence for Inherent Sexual Injury of Male Circumcision
    George Hill

    Dear Editor:

    Holms, writing in June 2004, laments that there is a “singular lack” of medical evidence regarding the harm of early circumcision on which to form an opinion regarding the ethical status of child circumcision.[1]

    We submit that that is not the case. We affirm there was enough evidence in 2004 regarding the inherent harm of circumcision on which to make a decision. We furth...

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  • ARDS Network experiment defied elementary ethical standards
    Vera H. Sharav

    Dear Editor

    Dr Howard Mann[1] discusses the "intense controversy about the scientific and ethical validity" that followed the publication of a government sponsored lung ventilation experiment conducted on 861 critically ill patients suffering from acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) or acute lung injury. However, he does not address the violation of the first and foremost tenet of acceptable research involvin...

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