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Assisted dying methods can lead to “inhumane” deaths

BMJ 2019; 364 doi: (Published 21 February 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;364:l797

Read our collection of articles on assisted dying

  1. Ingrid Torjesen
  1. London

Methods for assisting death in countries where the practice is legal do not reliably achieve unconsciousness at the time of death to ensure that the patient experiences no pain or distress, a review published in the journal Anaesthesia has found.1

An argument made in support of assisted dying is that it minimises patients’ pain and distress and allows them to die with dignity at a time and place of their choosing. This argument assumes that the methods used are always effective in their aim of producing unconsciousness and death quickly, but an international group of researchers reviewed the …

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