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Health Ethics

SCENARIO

Robert, age twenty-five, has lost 50 percent of his kidney function due to diabetes, which has also left him blind and with severe neuropathy in his legs and feet. His general condition is deteriorating so rapidly that he probably has no more than a year to live. Robert's father wants to donate his kidney, if he is compatible. Dialysis is no option in the mind of the father, since he feels that Robert could not take it psychologically. The fam­ily has a history of both diabetes and liver problems. The transplant will help with the kidney problem, but will not reverse or stop the progression of the other effects of the diabetes.

A. Is either dialysis or a transplant medically indicated?

B. Is the father's belief about his son's ability to endure dialysis relevant?

C. Should Robert be consulted?

D. Is the father ethical in donating his kidney in view of his family history?

E. Do the ethics of allocation favor or militate against a transplant in this case?

My Answers

This is how I answered the Scenario Questions.
I just need feed back.

A. I believe Dialysis is medically indicated. Even if he did not receive a kidney transplant he would need dialysis.

B. To the Father Yes. He believes from the scenario that the son is not psychologically capable of the thought of dialysis at such a young age.

C. Yes, He would be the recipient and he has a choice to say yes or no.

D.This is a person choice. I do not know how old the father is, but I do know he wants his son to have a full life.

E.

Solution Preview

A. I believe Dialysis is medically indicated. Even if he did not receive a kidney transplant he would need dialysis. I think that you should also add here that if there were an unlimited number of kidneys available for transplant, a transplant would be medically indicated. We use dialysis because it is the next best thing and there aren't an unlimited number of kidneys available. This is a quality of life question as much as it is a medical question. Will the quality of life be better off with a transplant even with the other effects of the condition? And if the answer is yes, then a transplant would be medically indicated. Obviously, since there aren't enough Kidneys', most of the time dialysis is medically indicated.

B. Here, we have to look at the fact that in this society and most others, children are the responsibility of their parents. The father's responsibility is to look out for the best interests of his ...

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