TX - Texas family fights for euthanasia laws after daughter's death

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by nrdsb4, Apr 3, 2014.

  1. nrdsb4

    nrdsb4 Active Member

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    A Texas family decided to let their terminally ill/brain damaged daughter go. Since she was not on a ventilator or life sustaining medications, the only options available to them were to turn off tube feedings and IV hydration. They feel this is inhumane and want to put laws into place which would allow medical personnel to hasten a patient's death by less passive means.

    As a nurse who worked in the ICU, we faced this situation many times. Patients' families wanted us to give a lethal dose of morphine to "kill" a patient who either had stated wishes about being kept alive in a certain state or who were going through endless suffering. Obviously, we were prohibited from doing this, though we could give morphine to patients in obvious distress, all while knowing that the medicines could result in respiratory depression and death. It's a fine line we walk in these situations.

    Any thoughts on this family's crusade to establish euthanasia laws?
     
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  3. EGirl

    EGirl #RockportStrong

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  4. FL Wannabe

    FL Wannabe Active Member

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    Scary story - to think that precious child had to starve until she died... This is a hot topic, but I also agree there are times where we give animals more dignity than humans. End-of-life is one of them.
     
  5. Gardenlady

    Gardenlady Active Member

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    Quite right. We don't make our animal companions starve to death when it is time to go, human beings should not have to be starved to be released from pain and suffering either. I realize at end of life the withholding of food isn't always painful or bothersome to the ill person (whose body is or may be shutting down, and appetite often disappears anyway), but requiring someone to just sit and wait around, without food, for the inevitable end to come is just cruel. Euthanasia should be legalized.
     
  6. nrdsb4

    nrdsb4 Active Member

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    ^^^^^Gardenlady, you do make a good point. Think about times you have been really really sick. The last thing in the world you wanted was food. You probably were too wrapped up in the feelings produced by the illness to even notice you hadn't eaten. People who are very terminally ill very well may not be suffering to the extent that people experiencing their normal healthy appetites believe that they are. Particularly in someone brain damaged, they may not be able to perceive hunger. In some situations, it's likely that the only distress experienced is that of the loved ones. Hunger is a basic urge, and it's really hard to believe that a living being wouldn't experience it on some level. But in my experience, I do believe that many people feel no discomfort because it is normal for that urge to shut down.

    In other cases, it could certainly be a different story. Each case is different and dependent upon many factors.
     
  7. nrdsb4

    nrdsb4 Active Member

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  8. glamourkitty1922

    glamourkitty1922 Member

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    I don't like the idea. Holland has an euthanasia law and the vast majority of cases are involutary. It should tell you a lot when you realize the average "retirement" period in Holland is 3 months. People actually carry "do not euthanize" cards.
    I don't think euthenasia is proper without the patient's expressed permission. It is too easy to become habitual and used as a cost saving tool.:twocents:
    My first paragraph is a fact (or was circa 2006 when I researched it) and the second paragraph pure personal opinion.
     
  9. passionflower

    passionflower Just 1 tip to find a killer

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    I carry my 'living will' every where. I have brain tumors and I could have brain death at any moment. When I was told this, I immediately got a living will notorized and updated often. I am the lucky few, so many are healthy and then have no protection against the law to keep them alive. No artificial life support for me. I watched in horror my dear cousin die to a skeleton due to cancer, there was no hope at all. Yet she was kept hydrated and alive for 6 weeks in a coma............I prayed every night for her to go peacefully, but her heart was still good. :(
     
  10. Richrd

    Richrd Well-Known Member

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  11. nrdsb4

    nrdsb4 Active Member

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  12. txsvicki

    txsvicki Active Member

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    The link didn't say much. Was the baby in a vegetative state? She was breathing on her own after being revived. Was she expected to die or just stay in that state for years? I'd want to still give hydration but plenty of meds that cut down respirations and would eventually build up in the system to hasten death. That's the way doctors did it before all the controversy.
     
  13. jjenny

    jjenny Well-Known Member

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    Patients in PVS could live for years. Like Terry Schiavo. Apparently in Natalie's case they didn't expect her to last that long.
    But if she was going to die quickly on her own, there would be no need to terminate fluids and feeding tube.
     
  14. Richrd

    Richrd Well-Known Member

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  15. SwampMama

    SwampMama Insomniac Extraordinaire

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    I believe in euthanasia for people, especially if they are the ones who want it. As it has been said above, we would not allow animals to suffer yet humans are not allowed the same release from pain when a situation is hopeless.

    I have a loved one who has made me promise to never let them suffer if they were in an accident and in a paralyzed state, hooked to machines. They feel so strongly about this that they begged me, with tears in their eyes, to never allow them to suffer that way.(A friend had suffered a similar accident around this time, while another was killed in an accident).

    I made that promise, in good faith, and if that situation ever occurred and that is what they wanted, then I would not let them suffer. Yes, I understand the potential consequences of my actions and what it could mean to the rest if my life. But I will not let them suffer. I would help them any way that I could.
     

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