Withdrawing life support in patients in permament vegetative state. Is it ethical?

One major ethical issue is to determine whether artificial nutrition and hydration should be withdrawn from patients in a permanent vegetative state (PVS) or minimally conscious state (MCS). In a study published in the Journal of Medical Ethics (41; 157-160, 2015), 51 families of...

Assisted suicide law in different countries

Assisted suicide, which essentially consists of a physician providing the means for a patient to end their own life, is legal in four American states, Canada and four European countries. In the United States, assisted suicide law is exclusively limited to patients with terminal...

Bone marrow stem cells for the treatment of multiple sclerosis. Surprising results

A recent study published in the The Lancet has shown surprising results as regards the use of autologous bone marrow stem cells for the treatment of multiple sclerosis. The study included 24 patients, 1 of whom died, while the remaining 23 had an objective improvement, with 69.6%...

Sperm quality depends on age and it is an important risk factor when fatherhood is increasingly delayed

Recent data from molecular genetics and epidemiology provide evidence that paternal age (sperm quality) is an important risk factor for offspring. When the sperm quality of young men were compared with the sperm of older men, the latter were found to have a higher risk of...

The UK HIV infection figures remain high despite recent falling in mortality rates

The incidence of HIV infection fell between 1990 and 2013. In 1990, around two million people were infected; in 1997, 2.8 million; and in 2013, 1.8 million. Mortality rates have also fallen: around 300,000 people in 1990; 1.7 million in 2005 and 1.3 million in 2013 (JAMA 314;...

Assisted reproduction: Do pregnancies achieved following assisted reproduction techniques have more risks?

One medical and ethical aspect of assisted reproduction that should be considered is to what extent singleton pregnancies achieved following these procedures have (or ave not) more risks than those conceived naturally. In an extensive meta-analysis that included 161,370 births...

More boys than girls are apparently born after IVF

 A recent study in Fertility and Sterility (Fertil Steril, 101; 1321-1325, 2014) that included 106,666 children born through in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) or intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) between 2000 and 2010 in the United Kingdom found a tendency for more boys to be...

Human life biological beginning

Fertilisation is the dynamic and temporal process by which an individual is formed from materials supplied by its parents. Fertilisation is a process with epigenetic temporal dynamics: the genetic information inherited is fed back by the process itself (by an interaction of the...

Uterus transplant. Medical and ethical reflection

We must reflect on the uterus transplantation ethical problems that may accompany it, in relation to both the donor as well as the recipient and the child The results of the first clinical trial on living donor uterus transplantation have been published, which included nine...

Teenage pregnancy from 10 to 14 year olds in USA

Teenage pregnancy rates remain high in the United States, with 3108 pregnancies among adolescents aged between 10 and 14 years in 2013. Extensive studies show that pregnancies in teenagers have more risks that those in women aged 20 to 29 years old, particularly in regard to...