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Arquivos de Medicina

On-line version ISSN 2183-2447


FREIRE, Elga René. Medical futility, from theory to practice. Arq Med [online]. 2015, vol.29, n.4, pp.98-102. ISSN 2183-2447.

The concept of medical futility is as old as medicine but, from the 1950s onwards, with the technological development and the replacement of medical paternalism by patient autonomy, it emerges as a category that healthcare providers use to decide when to withhold or withdraw medical treatment. Based on two of her own cases of clinical practice, the author aims to review and reflect on futile treatments.

Keywords : medical futility; withhold; withdraw; autonomy; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

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