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The decision to request a DNR order

Summary of scenario

Mr. Martinez was a seventy-five-year-old chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patient. He was in the hospital because of an upper respiratory tract infection. He and his wife had requested that CPR not be performed should he require it. A DNR order was written in the charts. In his room on the third floor, he was being maintained with antibiotics, fluids, and oxygen and seemed to be doing better. However, Mr. Martinezâ??s oxygen was inadvertently turned up, and this caused him to go into respiratory failure. When found by the therapist, he was in terrible distress and lay gasping in his bed.


Should Mr. Martinez be transferred to intensive care, where his respiratory failure can be treated by a ventilator and his oxygen level can be monitored? For your response to the Mr. Martinez scenario, think about the contextual features, quality of life, patient preferences and medical indications. Then, provide an ethical rationale.

Solution Preview

The decision about whether to move Mr. Martinez to intensive care and use a ventilator is a difficult one. He and his wife did request a DNR order. However, they may have made assumptions that the situation which would require resuscitation would be caused by deterioration of his condition naturally. In this instance, Mr. Martinez requires additional help in getting enough oxygen. . He requires more assistance in getting enough oxygen to recover from the upper respiratory infection. His condition has not deteriorated naturally. It was brought about by the accidental ...

Solution Summary

The decision to request a DNR order is clearly summarized.