On the Use of Anencephalic Infants as Organ Donors
Medearis, Donald N.
Holmes, Lewis B.
New England Journal of Medicine. 1989 Aug 10; 321(6): 391-393.
Two physicians argue against changing the Uniform Determination of Death Act and the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act to allow procurement of transplantable organs from infants with anencephaly who do not meet the legal criteria for brain death. Medearis and Lewis believe that the potential supply of organs from anencephalic infants has been overestimated, that anencephaly can be misdiagnosed, and that allowing organs to be taken from live anencephalics, thereby killing them, would set a dangerous precedent. They also warn of the need to protect a woman with an anencephalic fetus from pressure either to abort or to carry to term and donate the infant's organs. The authors call for more studies on anencephalic infants (such as the one reported by Peabody, et al. in this issue of the
Abortion; Anencephaly; Body Parts and Fluids; Brain; Brain Death; Consent; Death; Determination of Death; Diagnosis; Donors; Human Experimentation; Infants; Killing; Legal Aspects; Newborns; Organ Donors; Parental Consent; Physicians; Pregnant Women; Prenatal Diagnosis; Terminally Ill; Tissue Donation; Wedge Argument;
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Critical Issues Debates: Intervention for Infants With Fatal Heart Disease, Xenografting, and Brain Death Criteria for Anencephalic Infants. Debate III: Resolved: Brain Death Criteria Must Be Revised So That Society Can Readily Benefit From Families Who Offer Their Anencephalic Infants as Organ Donors (Debate 3 of 3) Girvin, John; Capron, Alexander Morgan; Press, Bill (1993-11)