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In Search of a Sweet Death

In Search of a Sweet Death When asked "how would you like to die?" there are two words that come up over and over. QuickPainless Often, "in my sleep" follows shortly after. But when this sweet death seems all but certain we are often... Electroshocked Our bones are broken and bruised. Paralyzed and ventilated Poisoned If all this sounds like a nightmare only reserved for terrorist suspects, it is. It's a nightmare that doctors overwhelmingly choose to avoid when they die themselves. If you found yourself with an ireversal brain injury but not terminally ill, life could be saved with CPR, would and your you choose it? Most people would. But not doctors. According to the Johns Hopkins Precursors Study, CPR Please! 90% of doctors would NOT want CPR in the above situation. They would rather die. In fact, doctors would refuse all sorts of life saving treatments. No No No No No 87% 87% 85% 80% 77% Dialysis Chemotherapy Surgery Feeding tube Ventilation What do doctors know that we don't? One study looked at the sunvival rate of people who received CPR on television medical dramas. 75% of them survived with no complications. In reality, the story is very different. In a study of 95,072 patients who received CPR, 3% survived with no complications. 3% suvived, but were in a vegetative state. And the rest... ..were dead, When we beg doctors to "do everything you can" to save our loved omes, we are perhaps quick to trade their quality of life for simply staying alive. 80% of us would like to die at home. This is the sweet death we talk about. 20% will get their wish. 20% will die in a nursing home. The rest will die in the hostpital. With a third of those dying in the intensive care unit. Where the cost of their stay will run up to $10,000 per day. The average American will live for 78 years. The final year accounts for 25% of medi- care spending. $150 billion $50 billion for the last 2 months alone. This is hugely profitable for hospitals and it's no wonder modem medicine has become so good at keeping the terminally ill alive. But for most doctors, death is not the worst case scenario. the measures to prevent it are. It may be that the most important question you can ask your doctor is not "What can you do?", but "What would you do?" Sources: Johns Hopkins Precursors Study, 1998, via The Bitter End at Radiolab. I Cardiopulmonary resuscita- tion on television. Miracles and misinformation; New England Journal of Medicine, June 13, 1996. Prehospital Epinephrine Use and Suvival Among Patients With Out-of Hospital Cardias Amest, The Journal of the American Medical association, March 21, 2012. How Doctors Die, Nexus, Nov 30, 2011. The Cost of Dying, CBSNews, Dec 3, 2010. Cutting the high oost of end-of-life care, Money Magozine, Dec 12, 2012.

In Search of a Sweet Death

shared by visually on Mar 06
Given the choice of life in a vegetative state versus a quick, painless death, most doctors chose the latter. See why.




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