Franklin G. Miller and Robert D. Truog: Death, dying, and organ transplantation: reconstructing medical ethics at the end of life
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Modern medicine has improved to ever higher levels in its capacity to preserve life through the enhancement of its intensive care structures and the possibility of organ transplantation. But, at the same time, these practices have brought the risk of forgetting and/or obfuscating the basic principles of medical ethics, which, first of all, prescribe that clinicians must not kill their patients and that vital organs can be removed only from dead human beings. This is the main issue that the authors present in the Preface of the book, and it is useful for understanding the ethical importance of the book’s reflections. The final aim of the authors, in fact, is to preserve the legitimacy of end-of-life practices by reviewing and evaluating its medical ethics.
Chapter 1 deals with a very delicate topic: the withdrawing of life-sustaining treatments. The issue is crucial because it entails an unavoidable reference to the theme of euthanasia. Observing that the advent of the mechanical...