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Archives: Terms and Definitions

Ventilator

A machine that helps a patient breathe. Sometimes it is used temporarily until a person can breathe on his or her own; other times it

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Termination of Treatment

Hastening the death of a person by ceasing or altering some form of support, which otherwise would help the patient to live longer, and allowing

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Terminal Sedation

Terminal sedation usually refers to when a consenting patient is sedated to the point of unconsciousness to relieve otherwise untreatable pain and suffering, and is

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Terminal Illness

Refers to an illness or condition that is incurable and irreversible. When a person is diagnosed as terminally ill, death is expected in a relatively

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Suicide

The intentional taking of one’s own life. In the medical literature, suicide is viewed as an act of despair and connotes an often desperate, violent,

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Slippery Slope

An argument frequently used against changing the law, which states that it is impossible to set secure limits. Under this argument, it is claimed that

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Principles of Bioethics

Refers to the rules and principles generally accepted as relevant in the moral analysis of ethical issues in medicine. In health care it is difficult

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Physician Assisted Suicide

The ending of one’s own life by taking a medication knowingly provided by a physician for that purpose. A physician knowingly supplies the means, which

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