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Med Arh. 2005;59(3):199-202.

Dysthanasia: the (il)legitimacy of artificially posponed death.

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Department of Social Sciences, Rijeka University School of Medicine, Riijeka, Croatia.


The concept of "dysthanasia" is still partially known in the world academic community. The concept is opposite to the concept of "euthanasia", incomparably more often mentioned, but without doubt much less often practiced in health-care institutions, especially in intensive care units. The objective of this article is to expound fundamental theoretical and practical aspects of dysthanasia, as well as to encourage discussion about this actual topic. The article discusses the position of dysthanasia within the objectives of contemporary medicine, as well as according to the definition of health by the WHO the definition of illness by the Hastings Center and the Recommendation No. 1418 of the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly. It concludes with comments on certain examples of possible dysthanasia from the world history and two actual examples from our clinical practice.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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