Facts, Lies, and Videotapes: The Permanent Vegetative State and the Sad Case of Terri Schiavo

  title={Facts, Lies, and Videotapes: The Permanent Vegetative State and the Sad Case of Terri Schiavo},
  author={Ronald E. Cranford},
  journal={The Journal of Law, Medicine \& Ethics},
  pages={363 - 371}
  • R. Cranford
  • Published 1 June 2005
  • Medicine
  • The Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics
Right to die legal cases in the United States have evolved over the last 25 years, beginning with the Karen Quinlan case in 1975. Different substantive and procedural issues have been raised in these cases, and society's thinking has changed as a result of the far more complex legal issues that appear today as opposed to the simplistic views raised in early landmark cases. Many of the early cases involved patients in a vegetative state, but more recently patients who were in a minimally… 
Theresa Schiavo's tragedy and ours, too
Her sad case was noteworthy for ubiquitous media coverage of the family dispute over her treatment, the intense political action that was generated on both sides of the debate, and the unprecedented, unpopular, and unconstitutional legislative intervention by the Florida legislature and United States Congress.
She never regained consciousness and remained in a persistent veg­ etative state (PVS) for more than 15 years, nourished and hydrated through a percutaneous endoscopic gastro­ stomy feeding tube.
Irrational Exuberance: Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation as Fetish
It is proposed that the medical profession has an ethical duty to inform the public through education campaigns about the procedure's limitations in the out-of-hospital setting and the narrow clinical indications for which it has been demonstrated to have a reasonable probability of producing favorable outcomes.
Ethics update: lessons learned from Terri Schiavo: the importance of healthcare proxies in clinical decision-making
It is incumbent upon the medical community, political and religious leaders and the media to educate the public appropriately about options regarding end-of-life issues and to foster open discourse and encourage the execution of advance directives or healthcare proxies.
Death, unconsciousness and the brain
Ethical, moral and religious concerns continue to surface and include a prevailing malaise about possible expansions of the definition of death to encompass the vegetative state or about the feared bias of formulating criteria so as to facilitate organ transplantation.
In Pursuit of a Good Death: Responding to Changing Sensibilities in the Context of the Right to Die Debate
This thesis challenges a number of claims that are made in the context of the euthanasia debate: that there is only one version of the good death; that rights discourse is the most appropriate
Brain damage and the moral significance of consciousness.
It is argued that enjoyment of consciousness might actually give stronger moral reasons not to preserve a patient's life and, indeed, that these might be stronger when patients retain significant cognitive function.
Ethical Issues in the Treatment of Severe Brain Injury
  • J. Bernat
  • Medicine
    Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences
  • 2009
Families of brain‐injured patients should be compassionately counseled that, despite provocative and highly publicized case reports, these technologies, while promising, are currently investigational and have not been sufficiently validated yet to be available for routine clinical use.
Conclusion Interrupting Moral Technique, Transforming Biomedical Ethics
  • A. Moyse
  • Philosophy, Political Science
  • 2015
The study of bioethics should not simply be a discourse about abstract ends, prima facie obligations, or common moral categories. Rather, bioethics cannot be an ethics that is settled, uniform, and
Withholding Hydration and Nutrition in Newborns
Forgoing medical fluids and food represents a morally acceptable option as part of a carefully developed palliative care plan considering the infant’s prognosis and the burdens of continued treatment.


Bioethicists' statement on the U.S. Supreme Court's Cruzan decision.
The purpose of this statement is to clarify the meaning of that case in order to prevent misinterpretation that might lead to serious adverse consequences for hopelessly ill patients, their families, and health care professionals.
The Vegetative State: Medical Facts, Ethical and Legal Dilemmas
A syndrome in search of a name that causes brain damage and changes in attitudes to the permanent vegetative state.
The minimally conscious state: Definition and diagnostic criteria
MCS is characterized by inconsistent but clearly discernible behavioral evidence of consciousness and can be distinguished from coma and VS by documenting the presence of specific behavioral features not found in either of these conditions.
The minimally conscious state in children.
Clinical and neuroimaging data on 5 children diagnosed with minimally conscious state is presented and limited information available concerning its epidemiology, etiology, pathology, and prognosis is discussed.
With His Wife in Limbo, Husband Can't Move 10
  • Long Goodbye, the Deaths of Nancy Cruaan
  • 2002
Hammesfahr's use of transcranial Doppler testing and vasodilator therapy, see the comments by Dr. S. Novella at <www.quackwatch.com> (last visited April
  • 2000
Beyond the Vegetative State
  • J m m l of Contemporary Health Law and Policy
  • 1999
Quite Contrq, How Was I to Know?
  • University of Detroit Mercy Law Review
  • 1995
Discontinuation of Artificial Hydration and Nutrition in Hopelessly Vegetative Children
  • Annals of Neurology
  • 1992