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Ethics of Kidney Transplant-HELP ASAP

Discussion in 'Medical Students - MD' started by biggezz, Sep 3, 2001.

  1. biggezz

    biggezz Junior Member 10+ Year Member

    Nov 29, 2000
    Hey Guys,
    If a child needs and wants a kidney transplant but the parents say it is against their religion what do the doctors do? Listen to the parents or to the child?

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  3. Stephen Ewen

    Stephen Ewen 10+ Year Member

    That is definitely one for the courts.
  4. MorningLight210

    MorningLight210 Member 7+ Year Member

    Aug 29, 2001
    New York, NY
    I know that in the case of blood transfusions, if the doctors believe a transfusion is absolutely necessary to save a child's life, but the parents object for religious reasons, then the doctors still win out. This actually arose from a court case, if I recall correctly. I believe it's partly based on the idea that the physician's primary duty is to the protection of his/her patient. Perhaps transplants are in the same boat?
  5. Djanaba

    Djanaba Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    May 4, 2000
    Minneapolis, MN
    Regardless of who we think is "right," the case must be brought to court. Likely, the kid will win out if a suitable donor is ready and waiting, and even if one is not (the kid's on the list).
  6. Cobragirl

    Cobragirl Hoohaa helper ;) 10+ Year Member

    Aug 18, 2000
    In residency HELL
    While the parents certainly have custodial rights over the child, the child is NOT property, and therefor should be given the transplant since he is not of an age to make the (religious) decision himself. Afterall, who's to say that the child will reach legal age and have the same religious views as his parents (I know I don't!)?

    Do no harm.....
  7. mcwmark

    mcwmark Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Jun 20, 2001
    When risks to the child are life-threatening, many states will abide by the principle of "parens patriae"--or Latin for "parent of the state" which allows the state to act in the best interest of minor children and mentally incompetent persons.

    There is a grey area on what to do if the minor refuses life-saving what age is the minor competent to make medical decisions for him or herself?
  8. Firebird

    Firebird 1K Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 15, 2001
    That's what I was going to ask about. What if the kid refuses the transfusion? Do they put him/her in restraints and force the IV?

    I'll tell ya, that's one situation where I certainly wouldn't want to be the doctor.
  9. cg1

    cg1 Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    May 23, 2000
    Yes. And with something this controversial, wouldn't a surgeon ask their hospital what their policy is?

    Or isn't that how it's done? :confused:

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