When Can Elderly Patients Be Excluded From Discussing Resuscitation?
Journal of the Royal College of Physicians of London. 1996 Mar-Apr; 30(2): 133-135.
Case notes of elderly medical patients were surveyed to determine when "do not resuscitate' (DNR) decisions could legitimately be made without consulting them. Patients were thought to be suitable for exclusion from decisions if morbidity scores indicated that they were unlikely to survive cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or if they were mentally incompetent. Thirty per cent of all patients were predicted not to survive CPR; another 28% were deemed incompetent. Of those with DNR decisions, 59% were predicted not to survive and a further 24% were incompetent. Discussing resuscitation would have been appropriate with 17% of those with DNR decisions.
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