Question by atreehugger: Case studies – Following on from Truth telling Question.?
A 65 year old man comes to his physician with complaints of abdominal pain that is persistent but not extreme. Results reveal that he has metastatic cancer of the pancreas. The man has just retired from a busy professional career, and he and his wife are about to leave on around the world cruise that they’ve been planning for over a year.
Should he be told about his diagnosis?
A 78yr old Asian woman is admitted to hospital with weight loss, weakness and a pulmonary mass. Results show that she has pulmonary TB. Her family approaches the physician and asks that the patient not be told, stating that in her upbringing in mainland China TB was considered fatal and to tell her would be like giving her a ‘death sentence’.
Should the families concerns be respected?
Answer by okchick133
from a doctors point of view, they are obligated to inform and treat their patients…unless the PATIENT asks not to be treated or informed. in the Asian woman case, the family members do not have the right to ask the doctor to withhold his diagnosis. he is also obligated to tell the man about the cancer even if there isn’t any treatment options. not doing so could result in the doctor being sued by the patient for negligence.
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