• R. Truog
  • J. Burns
  • M. C. Rogers
Part of the Update in Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine book series (UICM, volume 25)


The competent practice of critical care medicine today requires more than a knowledge of the relevant medical science. At least some understanding of medical ethics and related law is required, and perhaps in no area of medicine is this more true than in the care of critically ill patients. During the past century dramatic changes have occurred in physicians’ ability to prolong life. The ethical dilemmas associated with the advances in medical technology and the evolution of the physician-patient relationship have become the subject of wide public concern. As we enter into an era of medicine where the cost of care and the utilization of limited resources are increasingly debated, critical care physicians, with expertise in life and death decisions and with responsibility for caring for patients who require life-sustaining treatments, must possess a clear ethical framework for decision making. This chapter focuses on the key foundations of medical ethics and practical approaches to ethical decision making in the pediatric intensive care unit.


Down Syndrome Pediatric Intensive Care Unit Ethical Dilemma Advance Directive Duodenal Atresia 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Truog
  • J. Burns
  • M. C. Rogers

There are no affiliations available

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