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Thread: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    I love how all the "pro-lifers" come out of the woodwork when cases such as these occur. To defend the life of ONE unsavable woman. In a state with more than a quarter of its population--over six MILLION people--unable to afford health insurance. Because of its "pro-life" governor.
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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Quote Originally Posted by Phys251 View Post
    I love how all the "pro-lifers" come out of the woodwork when cases such as these occur. To defend the life of ONE unsavable woman. In a state with more than a quarter of its population--over six MILLION people--unable to afford health insurance. Because of its "pro-life" governor.
    Are you in a coma? We have Obamacare now. Everyone can afford health insurance!
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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Quote Originally Posted by Maenad View Post
    Are you in a coma? We have Obamacare now. Everyone can afford health insurance!
    Not if you're a member of the working poor in a state that won't expand Medicaid, such as Texas.
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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Quote Originally Posted by Maenad View Post
    It is clear that the doctors were under a law which was put on the books in 1977 that mandated keeping a pregnant woman alive until the fetus is viable. They had no choice. I am amazed at the number of people who think it is all so cut and dried, person is brain dead, pull the plug. It just isn't that easy. When I finished my master's I, through no choice of my own, got in the middle of something similar. The Ethics Committee had given a family the choice of pulling the plug on one of theirs. The staff went completely ballistic. The man was still conscious. I was sent over to the unit to 'support' the staff through it. Their comment to me, 'Discharge him. If the family wants to kill him let them take him home and do it themselves.' I had to agree. So, I took this back to management. It was the first time the staff had been heard on the matter. The doctors went and evaluated him and decided, contrary to what the Ethics Committee thought, the man was not a candidate to have the plug pulled.

    There are laws and some very fine lines in these situations. The patient and the family are not the only ones with rights. Hospital staff also have the right not to have to do something they find morally repugnant. The law in America is more a balancing act than anything else. It seeks to balance the rights of all concerned. I do recall the similar fight by the family of Karen Quinlan. But when they pulled the plug, she did not die, she lay comatose without life support for 10 years.
    It was cut and dry. The law clearly pertained to an incapacitated pregnant patient who cannot speak for herself. This woman was DEAD. And the judge was clear that the law did not pertain to a dead patient.

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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Will big government Republicans try to pass emergency laws and attempt federal action like they did with Terry Schiavo?
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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Quote Originally Posted by reinoe View Post
    Will big government Republicans try to pass emergency laws and attempt federal action like they did with Terry Schiavo?
    With Obama in charge nope. His response instead was to proclaim that pot really isn't that bad. I think he was sending a message,

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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    I don't know the case in detail, but if it was possible to carry to term they should have done all they can to save the child.

    How do you feel about hospitals denying care to an otherwise "viable" patient that would survive if they got that care? Say a man goes to the ER with angina developing to full on cardiac arrest. The hospital staff can save him, but should they say "well, it's against our wishes to save you for x reason" and let him naturally die? Ethically there isn't too much difference considering both are human lives. They are different cases with different considering, but in both they are allowing someone to die when there are means to save them available.
    I'm quite confident in my knowledge of biology though, refresher courses won't be needed.
    Except doctor don't practice philosophy, they practice medicine- BIG difference. The FETUS isn't the same as an adult male, in the hospital or a court of law. The fetus was not viable at the time of the mother's death. (You don't know biology as well as you think)

    This wasn't about the wishes of the hospital, but the wishes of the family. You are bending 'logic' like the comparison of cutting off a leg being the same as terminating a pregnancy. In the adult male the priority for who gets to decide end of life is not the hospital to be first, they don't get a 'X reason" to deny.

    Are you truly sure the dead woman would remain functional enough for long enough to carry the fetus past 24 weeks and not produce a badly deformed baby? The woman's body will continue to deteriorate because she isn't in a coma, she is dead. Big difference on what happens to the body. that dead body passes fluids to the fetus, it isn't a 'closed' system. (this is why women should be very careful what medications they take while pregnant.)

    You Sir, don't know biology....

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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    I feel real conflicted about this. In theory this is the right decision but it should have been made at the time she became brain dead. The hospital should have respected the wishes of the husband/family and let the woman and her unborn fetus die peacefully. Instead they made her into a brain dead breeding machine because the hospital was playing god/big brother with someone over whom they had zero right to decide.

    It was down to the family to decide whether or not she should have been taken off life support and not some goddamn hospital because they did not have the right to do this to this woman, her fetus and her family. I hope the hospital is sued for their meddling in this family's right to decide.

    But on the other hand, in 4 to 6 weeks time, the fetus could become viable and taken out through c-section.

    As I wrote, I feel real conflicted about this, but in the end the family should have been respected and if a judge agrees with them then their final say must be respected.
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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Quote Originally Posted by Maenad View Post
    What does death smell like? I have worked with dying patients and even cleansed bodies and put them in body bags. I noticed no odor. I think the man is just being dramatic. Nobody smells good in the hospital, particularly if they haven't been bathed and I doubt that she has been. A comatose person on life support has a body that is functioning just like it did before it became comatose with the exception of things like the brain and the muscles going into contracture. The person does not lie there and 'decay.'
    Depends on the level of decomposition. There's no smell immediately after death but once the body starts to decompose it's just putrid, there's nothing else like it. Those still on Life support don't have the smell of death. There's a difference between the smell of death and the smell associated with being in hospital for 2 months and bathing normally vs hygiene care administered in hospital. Her husband is a paramedic, i don't understand why he wouldn't already know that. I'm sure he's experienced it in his working enviroment.

    Pretty sad story for all involved. Let them RIP now.

  10. #140
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    Re: Judge: brain-dead pregnant woman to be removed from life support

    Quote Originally Posted by notquiteright View Post
    Except doctor don't practice philosophy, they practice medicine- BIG difference. The FETUS isn't the same as an adult male, in the hospital or a court of law. The fetus was not viable at the time of the mother's death. (You don't know biology as well as you think)

    This wasn't about the wishes of the hospital, but the wishes of the family. You are bending 'logic' like the comparison of cutting off a leg being the same as terminating a pregnancy. In the adult male the priority for who gets to decide end of life is not the hospital to be first, they don't get a 'X reason" to deny.

    Are you truly sure the dead woman would remain functional enough for long enough to carry the fetus past 24 weeks and not produce a badly deformed baby? The woman's body will continue to deteriorate because she isn't in a coma, she is dead. Big difference on what happens to the body. that dead body passes fluids to the fetus, it isn't a 'closed' system. (this is why women should be very careful what medications they take while pregnant.)

    You Sir, don't know biology....
    Medicine has the principal of do no harm and protect life. Heck, the Hippocratic Oath forbids abortion. Now, abortion is a reality of medicine, but the premise is not to kill.

    And I do know biology, never once did I suggest that a fetus was going to survive without the living mother... My "logic" is that fetuses, as human lives, should be protected and life preserved. In cases where a life can be saved, it should be done. The mother was brain dead, the fetus could have possibly been brought to term and life support then withdrawn. Being brain dead and on life support does not mean the body is rotting in the sense of physical death. Her body is living, but her brain is dead. Machines kept her functioning. As I said, I don't know the case in detail, but if there was a chance of having the child brought to viability and then C-sectioned it should be done to preserve one life instead of ending 2.

    If you must know, I'm a published scientist, current doctoral student and have my bachelors degree in molecular biology. Don't try to spin your philosophy that a human fetus should have no protection as me not knowing biology. A large part of the reason that I am pro-life is because I'm educated on biology and I know that the fetus is an individual human life, not some inhuman clump of cells as many would call it. You might want to be careful when applying a "you don't know x" to people that disagree with your ethical views on human life and human value.
    Last edited by digsbe; 01-25-14 at 01:08 AM.
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