Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of jrsocmedLink to Publisher's site
J R Soc Med. 1995 January; 88(1): 18–19.
PMCID: PMC1295067

Acts of commission, omission, and demission or pulling the plug.


The difference between withholding and withdrawing treatment and actively killing is analysed. The intention of the physician and the effect on the patient are similar but the wider effect on others is different. The harmful effects of withdrawing life-preserving treatment which is no longer beneficial can be reduced by clarification of its purpose. This is to prolong life with value to the patient not just existence.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (307K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page.

Articles from Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine are provided here courtesy of Royal Society of Medicine Press