Perspectives on Death and Dying by Gere B. Fulton

By Gere B. Fulton

Find out how economics, advertising, and administration impact ones outlook on dying and death.

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At the same time, we are forcing some patients, or their families, to go to court to escape from medical treatment they do not want. How we got into this medical-ethical-legal thicket, and how we might find our way out, is the subject here. For ease in understanding what may seem like, to some, a terribly complex issue, we have divided our discussion of this topic into two parts. In the first of these, Chapter 2, we discuss the topic of making our own decisions about accepting or rejecting the use of life-sustaining medical treatment.

We have chosen to include this here, rather than in Chapter 9, because it is unlike, in many ways, the kind of deaths described there. We also offer suggestions here about helping children to understand and cope with death. Chapter 11 deals with a major public health problem, that of suicide. After reviewing the statistical profile of those who take their own lives, we examine two populations that are especially at risk-the young and the old. Risk factors and some possible warning signs of suicide are also presented.

4). Such patients lost all ability to respond to external stimuli and, even with the available life-support technology, had difficulty with the maintenance of homeostasis, especially the maintenance of blood pressure, which soon thereafter resulted in heart failure. The prognosis was then thought to be at most a few days, but sometimes as little as a few hours (Pallis, 1983, p. 34). The concept was slow in gaining popularity outside of France but, following the publication of the "Harvard Committee Report" it achieved worldwide recognition.

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