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Therapeutic Privilege: If, When, and How to Lie to Patients

Chapter

Abstract

Therapeutic privilege is the concept that physicians may sometimes lie to or consciously deceive patients for the patients’ own good. While well-established in many other cultures and even early Twentieth century medicine, the concept runs counter to established contemporary American medical ethics. Specifically, further a patient’s autonomy requires that they are appropriately informed; being informed requires knowing the truth. In many cases, the potential benefits of therapeutic privilege can be captured by telling patients the truth in a thoughtful and sensitive manner.

Keywords

Medical Information Merkel Cell Carcinoma Thick Melanoma Consequentialist Argument Therapeutic Privilege 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Yardley Dermatology AssociatesYardleyUSA
  2. 2.Fox Chase Cancer CenterPhiladelphiaUSA

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