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Death and Dying – Chapter 13

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What is active euthanasia?
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The intentional killing of the terminally ill, it involves a second party directly introducing a lethal dose of medication into a dying person.
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What is brain death?
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Death occurs when there is irreversible cessation of all brain function..
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What is cardiac death?
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An irreversible loss of all cardiac function, considered a legal death.
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What is an electroencephalogram (EEG)?
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A record of brain activity.
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Define expired?
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Died.
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What is hospice?
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A multi-disciplinary, family-centered care facility designed to provide care and supportive services to terminally iff patients and their families.
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Define hypothermia?
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The body temperature is below normal range.
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What are life support systems?
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Equiptment such as ventilators/respirators and feeding tubes that allow medical practitioners to sustain a patient’s life.
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What is mercy killing?
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Another term for voluntary euthanasia.
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What is palliative care?
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The total care of patients whose disease is no longer responsive to curative therapy. Comfort measures to provide relief of pain and suffering so the patient can die with dignity.
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What is passive euthanasia?
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Allowing a patient to die naturally without interference, it is legal in all states. Withholding medical interventions that would only serve to sustain the life.
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What is persistent vegetative state (PVS)?
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An irreversible brain condition in which the patient is in a state of deep unconsciousness.
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What is principle of double effect?
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When an action can have two effects: one that is morally good or desirable and one undesired and unintended..
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What is quality of life?
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The physiological status, emotional well-being, functional status, and life in general of the individual. It refers to more than just what a person experiences at one moment in time.
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What is respite care?
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Providing the family with relief from the responsibilities of patient care.
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What is rigor mortis?
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Stiffness that occurs in a dead body.
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What is substitute judgment rule?
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Used when decisions must be made for a person who cannot make his or her wishes known.
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Define terminally ill?
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One whose death is determined to be inevitable.
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What are viatical settlements?
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This allows people with terminal illnesses, such as AIDS, to obtain money from their life insurance policies by selling them.
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What is withdrawing life-sustaining treatment?
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Discontinuing a treatment or procedure such as artificial ventilation.
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What is withholding life-sustaining treatment?
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Failing to start a treatment or procedure such as artificial ventilation.
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Most states accept the definition of death as brain-oriented death, except which state?
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New Jersey.
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To protect the patient and also protect the physician against malpractice suits, what should be done before terminating a life-support system?
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An outside medical opinion should be sought.
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What does the word euthanasia literally mean?
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Good death.
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Euthanasia is illegal in all states except?
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Oregon and Washington.
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Some ethicists are concerned that if our society were to allow assisted suicide, it could lead to a form of legalized murder, this is considered what type of arguement?
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The slipper slope argument.
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Define ordinary means?
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A treatment or procedure that is morally required, such as fluids and comfort measures.
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Define extraordinary measures?
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Refers to procedures and treatments that are morally expendable, if it does not serve any useful purpose.
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Define guardian ad litem?
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A court appointed guardian to represent a minor, unborn child, or mentally incompent person in litigation.
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Dr. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross divided the dying process into five stages what are they?
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1. denial, 2. anger, 3. bargaining, 4. depression, 5. acceptance
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Define curative care?
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An attempt is made to cure the patient’s disease and requires healthcare professionals who understand the need for compassion rather than surgical or medical interventions.
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What is the federal Patient Self-Determination Act of 1991?
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It mandates that adult patients admitted into any healthcare facility that receives funding from either Medicare or Medicaid must be asked if they have an advance directive or wish to have information about these self-determination directives.
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What is an advance directive?
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A living will.
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Whart is substitute judgment rule?
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Used when decisions must be made for people who cannot make their own decisions.
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What is voluntary euthanasia?
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The action, or inaction of a second person to help or hasten the death of the person who wishes to die.
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Is suicide illegal? True or False
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True Considered morally wrong and is illegal in most states.
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The Uniform Determination of Death Act does what?
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Provides a definition of brain death.
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What are the criteria or standards for death?
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1. rigor mortis, 2. hypothermia, 3. loss of body color, 4. biological disintegration
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What is the Harvard criteria for determining when a patient is in an irreversible coma or loss of consciousness or brain-dead?
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1. Is the patient unreceptive and unresponsive, with a total unawareness of externally applied, and even painful, stimuli. 2. If the patient has no spontaneous movements or breathing, as well as an absence of response to stimuli such as pain, touch, sound, or light. 3. If the patient has no reflexes, has fixed dilated pupils, lace of eye movement, and lack of deep tendon reflexes. It also has required tests, EEG which should be repeated 24 hours later.