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No doubt that this is the

No doubt that this is the best written piece that summarizes this case out on the net right now.

I can't imagine the pain this family is going through. One thing that makes this case different is that this child went in for a routine procedure and the family expected their child back home and healthy after a routine stay. (As opposed to many of our brain death cases where the child had a severe trauma or cardiac arrest where brain death is often an unfortunate but "expected" outcome).

It would be interesting to see how this type of case would have played out here in NY or NJ where the brain death laws allow for reasonable accommodation of a family's moral objection to brain death. For example in NJ you cannot do a brain death exam without the consent of the family. In NY you cannot disconnect the ventilator or stop nutrition if a family has a moral or religious exemption to brain death.

Given that we have these laws on our books here one question that has often been posed to me is whether we are "obligated" to obtain the brain death diagnosis in a child who has severe neurologic injury or should we "look the other way" and not seek the diagnosis given that once you declare there's "no going back"?

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