Informed consent: a shared decision-making process that creates a new professional obligation for care


This statement on informed consent, developed by the SAGES Ethics Committee, has been reviewed and approved by the Board of Governors of SAGES. This statement is provided to offer guidance about the purpose and process of obtaining informed consent, and it is intended for practicing surgeons as well as patients seeking surgical intervention. It is an expression of well-established principles and extensive literature. Excluded from this document are discussions of informed consent for research and informed consent for introduction of new technology, as that has been addressed in previous publications (Strong in Surg Endosc 28:2272, 2014; Stefanidis in Surg Endosc 28:2257, 2014; as reported by Sillin (in: Stain (ed) The SAGES Manual Ethics of Surgical Innovation, Springer, Switzerland, 2016)).

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This document was prepared by the SAGES Ethics Committee: Arthur Rawlings (Chair), Limaris Barrios (Co-Chair), R. Ivan Beretvas, Charles Cheng, Jerry Cheriyan, Peter Crookes, Alberto Ferreres, Duke Jaspal, Robert Josloff, Jason Keune, Thom Lobe, Bruce MacFadyen, Paresh Mane, Marian McDonald, R. K. Mishra, Dana Portenier, Tameka Scott, Paul Severson, Phillip Shadduck, Lelan Sillin, Vivian Strong, David Tichansky, Vimalraj Velayutham.


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Correspondence to Arthur Rawlings.

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A. Rawlings, L. Sillin, M. McDonald, P. Crookes, B. MacFadyen, and J. Mellinger have no financial relationships with industry or conflicts of interest to disclose. Dr Shadduck discloses consulting fees from TransEnterix (Research & Development) and Heron Therapeutics (Research and Advisory Board).

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Rawlings, A., Sillin, L., Shadduck, P. et al. Informed consent: a shared decision-making process that creates a new professional obligation for care. Surg Endosc 34, 4713–4716 (2020).

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  • Informed Consent
  • Autonomy
  • Patient-physician relationship
  • Shared decision making