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View Diary: Death with Dignity Law Brings No Dignity to Some (272 comments)

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  •  It is criminal (11+ / 0-)

    that the dying are not given adequate pain relief. All ethical questions of assisted suicide aside, doctors can and should provide pain relief, even if it means the morphine dose is such that it may hasten death. Nobody deserves to die in that kind of pain, when relief is available.

    Some years ago, in a state which I will not name, my father-in-law suffered a brain aneurysm with irreversible damage. Although he was comatose, breathing was a terrible struggle, but clearly the situation could have gone on for weeks. In fact, there was talk of transferring him to a nursing home to die a slow death.

    After talking to the other family members, I met with his doctor and told him we wanted a morphine drip at a high enough dose to alleviate his symptoms. The doctor asked me, "Do you understand what you're asking for?" and I said, "Yes, we absolutely do, and it's what we want for him." My FIL died peacefully within 48 hours of the morphine drip being started, and increased accordingly to alleviate symptoms.

    Not every doctor may have been as cooperative, but we were fortunate that my FIL did not suffer for weeks.

    I firmly believe that every terminal patient should have the option of physician-assisted suicide.

    "We are not quitters." ...President Barack Obama 2-24-09

    by Ekaterin on Sun May 10, 2009 at 07:55:44 PM PDT

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