Ethical and legal implications of elective ventilation and organ transplantation: "medicalization" of dying versus medical mission

Paola Frati, Vittorio Fineschi, Matteo Gulino, Gianluca Montanari Vergallo, Natale Mario Di Luca, Emanuela Turillazzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A critical controversy surrounds the type of allowable interventions to be carried out in patients who are potential organ donors, in an attempt to improve organ perfusion and successful transplantation. The main goal is to transplant an organ in conditions as close as possible to its physiological live state. "Elective ventilation" (EV), that is, the use of ventilation for the sole purpose of retrieving the organs of patients close to death, is an option which offsets the shortage of organ donation. We have analyzed the legal context of the dying process of the organ donor and the feasibility of EV in the Italian context. There is no legal framework regulating the practice of EV, neither is any real information given to the general public. A public debate has yet to be initiated. In the Italian cultural and legislative scenario, we believe that, under some circumstances (i.e., the expressed wishes of the patient, even in the form of advance directives), the use of EV does not violate the principle of beneficence. We believe that the crux of the matter lies in the need to explore the real determination and will of the patient and his/her orientation towards the specific aim of organ donation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number973758
JournalBioMed Research International
Volume2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Medicine(all)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Ethical and legal implications of elective ventilation and organ transplantation: "medicalization" of dying versus medical mission'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this