To study the attitudes and beliefs of physicians who have experience caring for patients in the persistent vegetative state (PVS).
Mailed questionnaire survey.
500 physicians, 250 from the American Academy of Neurology and 250 from the American Medical Directors Association.
Physicians'beliefs about diagnosis of the PVS, patient awareness and suffering, treatment withdrawal, appropriate use of health maintenance and life-prolonging therapies, organ donation, lethal injection, and the treatment they would want if they were in the PVS.
68% of surveyed neurologists and 60% of medical directors responded.
Thirteen percent of responders believe that patients in the PVS have awareness and experience hunger and thirst ; 30% believe they experience pain.
Fewer than 9% believe that respiratory failure, cardiogenic shock, acute renal failure, or cancer should be aggressively treated.
Eighty-nine percent believe that it is ethical to withdraw artificial hydration and nutrition.
Almost two thirds of responders believe that it would be ethical to use the vital organs of patients in the PVS for transplantation, and 20% believe that it would be ethical to hasten the patient's death by lethal injection.
When evaluating the appropriateness of treatments for patients in the PVS, neurologists and medical directors largely concur. (...)
Mots-clés Pascal : Etat végétatif, Chronique, Ethique, Réanimation, Médecin, Etats Unis, Amérique du Nord, Amérique, Traitement, Evolution, Homme, Système nerveux pathologie, Trouble neurologique, Trouble conscience, Coma
Mots-clés Pascal anglais : Vegetative state, Chronic, Ethics, Resuscitation, Physician, United States, North America, America, Treatment, Evolution, Human, Nervous system diseases, Neurological disorder, Consciousness impairment, Coma
Notice produite par :
Inist-CNRS - Institut de l'Information Scientifique et Technique
Cote : 96-0334705
Code Inist : 002B27B04. Création : 10/04/1997.