False Expectations: Patient Expectation and Experience of Dying in a Biomedical Community

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/110080
Title:
False Expectations: Patient Expectation and Experience of Dying in a Biomedical Community
Author:
Smith, Carolyn M.
Citation:
Arizona Anthropologist #14: pp. 25-52, ©2001 Association of Student Anthropologists, Department of Anthropology, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721
Publisher:
University of Arizona, Department of Anthropology
Journal:
Arizona Anthropologist
Issue Date:
2001
Description:
1998 Dozier Award Winner
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/110080
Abstract:
It is widely recognized that the role of the physician has undergone dramatic changes in the last century changes which have serous implications for the patient-physician relationship. This is an ethnographic study examining how certain changes in the role and abilities of biomedical physicians have affected patient attitudes and expectations about end-of-life care. In-home interviews were conducted with eighteen persons age fifty-five and older, including a sample of Hemlock Society members. Results indicate a broad spectrum of end-of-life concerns including capacity, autonomy, pain, and burden to loved ones. Most participants reported a reluctance to begin a discussion of death or future deteriorating capacity with their physicians. Instead, when conversations about death were reported, they had been largely limited to the scenarios of catastrophic illness (e.g., hospitalization, ventilator, etc.) and the Living Will. While this discussion does not overlook the utility of the Living Will, it proposes that reliance on this document for preparing patients for end-of-life care is inadequate.
Type:
Article
Language:
en_US
Keywords:
End-of-Life; Living Will; Dying; Biomedicine
ISSN:
1062-1601

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorSmith, Carolyn M.en_US
dc.date.accessioned2010-08-21T03:17:50Z-
dc.date.available2010-08-21T03:17:50Z-
dc.date.issued2001-
dc.identifier.citationArizona Anthropologist #14: pp. 25-52, ©2001 Association of Student Anthropologists, Department of Anthropology, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721en_US
dc.identifier.issn1062-1601-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10150/110080-
dc.description1998 Dozier Award Winneren_US
dc.description.abstractIt is widely recognized that the role of the physician has undergone dramatic changes in the last century changes which have serous implications for the patient-physician relationship. This is an ethnographic study examining how certain changes in the role and abilities of biomedical physicians have affected patient attitudes and expectations about end-of-life care. In-home interviews were conducted with eighteen persons age fifty-five and older, including a sample of Hemlock Society members. Results indicate a broad spectrum of end-of-life concerns including capacity, autonomy, pain, and burden to loved ones. Most participants reported a reluctance to begin a discussion of death or future deteriorating capacity with their physicians. Instead, when conversations about death were reported, they had been largely limited to the scenarios of catastrophic illness (e.g., hospitalization, ventilator, etc.) and the Living Will. While this discussion does not overlook the utility of the Living Will, it proposes that reliance on this document for preparing patients for end-of-life care is inadequate.en_US
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.publisherUniversity of Arizona, Department of Anthropologyen_US
dc.subjectEnd-of-Lifeen_US
dc.subjectLiving Willen_US
dc.subjectDyingen_US
dc.subjectBiomedicineen_US
dc.titleFalse Expectations: Patient Expectation and Experience of Dying in a Biomedical Communityen_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
dc.identifier.journalArizona Anthropologisten_US
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