Informed Demand for Non-Beneficial Medical Treatment

Steven H. Miles

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

113 Scopus citations


An 85-year-old woman was taken from a nursing home to Hennepin County Medical Center on January 1, 1990, for emergency treatment of dyspnea from chronic bronchiectasis. The patient, Mrs. Helga Wanglie, required emergency intubation and was placed on a respirator. She occasionally acknowledged discomfort and recognized her family but could not communicate clearly. In May, after attempts to wean her from the respirator failed, she was discharged to a chronic care hospital. One week later, her heart stopped during a weaning attempt; she was resuscitated and taken to another hospital for intensive care. She remained unconscious, and a physician suggested.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)512-515
Number of pages4
JournalNew England Journal of Medicine
Issue number7
StatePublished - Aug 15 1991


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