Lege Artis Medicinae

[“Yesterday no longer exists either…” - End-of-life ethical issues in the care of dementia patients]

HEGEDÛS Katalin

OCTOBER 20, 2016

Lege Artis Medicinae - 2016;26(09-10)

[The number of dementia patiens is rising. Most of them die in various institutions, often after many years of care. The long process of nursing and care entails particular ethical requirements that are built primarily on vulnerability, dignity, and dia-logue. The dialogue, however, is often absent from the care of dementia patients. Do we find - as physicians, patients, relatives - that specific time when the patients can still make decisions about end-of-life treatments in a good mental state? Most patients would like to participate in these decisions. Talking about these issues in the early stage of dementia may help in the great emotional burden of family members and caregivers. Therefore the ethical aim is the ad­vance care planning (ACP) of the end-of-life treatments. The study reviews the latest scientific results, with special regard to resources that may be helpful in the course of conversations between doctor and patient on end-of-life preferences, and in the preparation for decision making. ]

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