The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child provides a framework for improving children's lives around the world. It covers both individual child health practice and public health and provides a unique and child‐centred approach to paediatric problems. The Convention applies to most child health problems and the articles are grouped into protection, provision and participation. Examples of the first are the right to protection from abuse, from economic exploitation and from illicit drugs. We examine one particular problem in each of these categories, specifically child labour, services for children with a disability and violence against children. The role of the paedialrician in applying a children's rights approach is discussed. Children's rights are increasingly being accepted around the world but still there is much more rhetoric paid to their value than genuine enforcement. Paediatricians can make a difference to the status of children worldwide by adopting a rights‐based approach.
Taking care of children makes them happy, lively and healthy, and it makes the society healthy. Children's rights have been discussed for years and the United Nation General Assembly has two conventions to prevent children abuse, the Minimum Age Convention of 1973 and the Convention on the Rights of the Child on 1989 However, in spite of these international agreements, the statistics show that the cases of children abuse increased from 749 cases in 1960 to one million cases in 1995 in the Western countries Islamic republic of IRAN agreed this international agreement in 1993. This study investigated the nature, structure and process of children's right in the city of Isfahan.
The study is qualitative, using Content Analysis. The purpose of the study is to discover children's right nature, and to describe the existing condition. Sampling method was purposive (or judgmental) and continued until data collection was completed. Sample consisted of 43 children, parents and teachers or trainers. Data were collected by observing schools and other public communities and also by interviews which were recorded, transcribed, reviewed and coded in three steps using qualitative research methods, Thematic Analysis, to extract the main conception.
The findings of observations and interviews classified in 260 codes and then joined together again to extract the main concepts and categories related to children's rights. This step lead to 12 categories and in the third step, four major categories including psychological and personality, physical, economic and cultural factors were extracted.
Based on the findings of this study, it is recommended that parents, teachers and other significant figures in the children's life should receive education on the children's rights and needs in various fields to become capable of developing policies and plans in this regard.
Children; human rights; personality; culture
The Jehovah's Witnesses Society is best known to outsiders for its refusal of blood products, even when such a refusal may result in death. Since the introduction of the blood ban in 1945, Jehovah's Witness (JW) parents have fought for their rights to refuse blood on behalf of their children, based on religious beliefs and their right to raise children as they see fit. Adolescent JWs have also sought to refuse blood products based on their beliefs, regardless of the views of their parents. Adult JWs have fought to protect their autonomy when making both contemporaneous and advance treatment refusal. The refusal of blood products by JWs raises ethical and legal dilemmas that are not easily answered. Do an individual's rights (namely bodily control, right to privacy, right to decide about life/death issues, right to religious freedom) outweigh society's rights (namely the preservation of life, the prevention of suicide, the protection of innocent third parties, and the maintenance of the ethical integrity of the medical profession)? Does the right to choose outweigh the value of human life? For doctors, conflict occurs between the desire to respect patient autonomy and the need to provide good medical care. The Watchtower Society (the JW governing body) imposes a strict code of moral standards among its members, and it is unlikely that individual JWs are making truly autonomous decisions about blood transfusions. While young children and adolescents are protected by the courts and conscious adults are afforded autonomy, dilemmas still arise in the emergency situation. This article examines the rights of young children, adolescents, and adults, focusing in the latter half on adults in the emergency situation.
Conduction disturbances have been documented after correction of ventricular septal defects by the ventricular route. Recently, repair of the ventricular septal defect has been through the right atrium to overcome damage to the conduction system and a right ventriculotomy. Thirty-nine children with ventricular septal defects under the age of 5 years were operated upon by the atrial route (group 1). The incidence of conduction disturbances in this group was compared with that occurring in 19 children of comparable age with a ventricular septal defect repaired via a right ventriculotomy (group 2). Complete right bundle-branch block developed in 13 of 39 children (33.3%) in group 1, compared with 15 of 19 children (78.9%) in group 2. This was a statistically significant reduction in complete right bundle-branch block in group 1. The incidence of left axis deviation occurring with complete right bundle-branch block was similarly statistically reduced. Transient complete heart block and arrhythmias were not statistically different in the two groups. The atrial approach to the repair of the ventricular septal defect significantly reduced the incidence of complete right bundle-branch block alone and occurring with left axis deviation.
This study examined the relations of school-age children’s depressive symptoms, frontal EEG asymmetry, and maternal history of childhood-onset depression (COD). Participants were 73 children, 43 of whom had mothers with COD. Children’s EEG was recorded at baseline and while watching happy and sad film clips. Depressive symptoms were measured using parent-report of Children’s Depression Inventory. The key findings are the interaction effects between baseline and film frontal EEG asymmetry on child depressive symptoms. Specifically, relative right frontal EEG asymmetry while watching happy or sad film clip was associated with elevated depressive symptoms for children who also exhibited right frontal EEG asymmetry at baseline. Results suggest that right frontal EEG asymmetry that is consistent across situations may be an marker of depression-prone children.
EEG symmetry; emotion; childhood depression; maternal depression
This article examines the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research recommendations on children as research subjects in the context of the history of American childhood. The Commission's deliberations took place during the post-World War II period of rapid changes in understandings of childhood and adolescence, brought on in part by school children's highly visible roles as risk-taking protagonists in the polio vaccine trials and the civil rights movement; by the children's rights movement and court decisions granting children and adolescents greater autonomy in divorce cases and in delinquency and mental health hearings, among other rights; and finally by a renewed movement for child protection led by parents of disabled children and by polio survivors themselves. The National Commission's final recommendations emphasized the need for parents to approve, for children above age seven to assent to research, and for children in special care (either medical, psychiatric, or because they were orphans or had committed juvenile crimes) generally to be subjects of research only if there was some direct connection between the reasons for their special care and the objectives of the research. Ultimately, in these recommendations, the National Commission charted a middle ground between the children's rights movement, which advocated enhanced self-determination for children, and the disability rights movement, which urged greater protection for children.
National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects of Biomedical and Behavioral Research; children as research subjects; autonomy; informed consent; research ethics; civic childhood
This article provides an overview of different types of rights to aid consideration of, and debate about, children and young people's rights in the context of paediatrics and child health. It demonstrates how children's rights may or may not differ from adult rights and the implications for practice. It shows that applying a children's rights framework can be more helpful in pursuing a public child health agenda than in reducing ethical or legal conflicts when interacting with child patients and their families.
children's rights; ethics
We know that stochastic feedback impairs children’s associative stimulus–response (S–R) learning (Crone et al., 2004a; Eppinger et al., 2009), but the impact of stochastic feedback on sequence learning that involves deductive reasoning has not been not tested so far. In the current study, 8- to 11-year-old children (N = 171) learned a sequence of four left and right button presses, LLRR, RRLL, LRLR, RLRL, LRRL, and RLLR, which needed to be deduced from feedback because no directional cues were given. One group of children experienced consistent feedback only (deterministic feedback, 100% correct). In this condition, green feedback on the screen indicated that the children had been right when they were right, and red feedback indicated that the children had been wrong when they were wrong. Another group of children experienced inconsistent feedback (stochastic feedback, 85% correct, 15% false), where in some trials, green feedback on the screen could signal that children were right when in fact they were wrong, and red feedback could indicate that they were wrong when in fact they had been right. Independently of age, children’s sequence learning in the stochastic condition was initially much lower than in the deterministic condition, but increased gradually and improved with practice. Responses toward positive vs. negative feedback varied with age. Children were increasingly able to understand that they could have been wrong when feedback indicated they were right (self-reflection), but they remained unable to understand that they could have been right when feedback indicated they were wrong (self-assertion).
sequence learning; learning under uncertainty; stochastic feedback; positive and negative feedback
This fMRI study investigated the development of language lateralization in left- and right-handed children between 5 and 18 years of age. Twenty-seven left-handed children (17 boys, 10 girls) and 54 age- and gender-matched right-handed children were included. We used functional MRI at 3T and a verb generation task to measure hemispheric language dominance based on either frontal or temporo-parietal regions of interest (ROIs) defined for the entire group and applied on an individual basis. Based on the frontal ROI, in the left-handed group, 23 participants (85%) demonstrated left-hemispheric language lateralization, 3 (11%) demonstrated symmetric activation, and 1 (4%) demonstrated right-hemispheric lateralization. In contrast, 50 (93%) of the right-handed children showed left-hemisphere lateralization and 3 (6%) demonstrated a symmetric activation pattern, while one (2%) demonstrated a right- hemisphere lateralization. The corresponding values for the temporo-parietal ROI for the left-handed children were 18 (67%) left-dominant, 6 (22%) symmetric, 3 (11%) right-dominant and for the right-handed children 49 (91%), 4 (7%), 1 (2%). Left-hemispheric language lateralization increased with age in both groups but somewhat different lateralization trajectories were observed in girls when compared to boys. The incidence of atypical language lateralization in left-handed children in this study was similar to that reported in adults. We also found similar rates of increase in left-hemispheric language lateralization with age between groups (i.e., independent of handedness) indicating the presence of similar mechanisms for language lateralization in left- and right-handed children.
Language lateralization; language development; handedness; fMRI
The aim of this research paper is to explore the dangers of involving children as family caregivers of palliative care and home-based-care to advanced HIV/AIDS patients, while its objective is to discuss the dangers or perfidiousness that minors especially the girl children face as they handle care giving of advanced HIV/AIDS patients. The article has relied on eclectic data sources. The research has foundminors disadvantaged by the following: being engulfed by fear and denied rights through care giving; being emotionally and physiologically overwhelmed; being oppressed and suppressed by caring duties; being at risk of contracting HIV/AIDS; and having their education compromised by care giving. The paper recommends: (1) strengthening and emphasizing on children’s rights; (2) maintaining gender balance in care giving; (3) implementation and domestication of the United Nations conventions on the rights of children; (4) community awareness on equal gender co participation in care giving; (5) and fostering realization that relying on child care giving is a negative score in fulfilling global Millennium Development Goals.
Care giving; Community home based care program; HIV/AIDS; Palliative minor caregivers; Perfidy
To limit the trauma to the chest and to achieve a pleasing cosmetic result, we used 2 types of right anterolateral thoracotomy in 48 patients who required open-heart surgery: 1 was a curved incision along the lower edge of the right breast in women with developed breasts; the other was a slanted incision for men and children. These surgical procedures took place between July 1996 and November 1997. Intraoperatively, a right atriotomy was used to repair 11 atrial septal defects and 11 ventricular septal defects, 2 combined atrial and ventricular septal defects, 1 case of a single atrium, and 1 partial atrioventricular canal. A right ventricular outflow tract incision was used to repair 7 ventricular septal defects and 7 ruptured aortic sinus aneurysm. A combination of a right atriotomy and right ventricular outflow tract incision was used for 2 repairs of combined atrial and ventricular septal defects, 3 radical corrections of tetralogy of Fallot, and 2 radical corrections of trilogy of Fallot. A combined right and interatrial septal incision was used for 6 mitral valve replacements and 1 mitral valvuloplasty. Smooth bypass cannulation and satisfactory intracardiac exposure were achieved with the right anterolateral thoracotomy. There was no complication or mortality directly related to the incision. We believe that the right anterolateral thoracotomy is safer and more effective than the median sternotomy for many common congenital and acquired heart diseases. The thoracotomy causes less trauma and results in a cosmetic appearance that is more acceptable to the patient.
Significant improvements in human rights and democracy have been made since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the United Nations in 1948. Yet, human rights, especially women's rights, are still being violated in many parts of the developing world. The adverse effects of such violations on women's and children's health are well known, but they are rarely measured. This study uses cross-national data from over 145 countries to estimate the impact of democracy and respect for human rights on various measures of women's health while controlling for confounding socio-economic factors such as income, education, fertility and healthcare. It finds that democracy and regards for human rights contribute positively to women's health outcomes, as do socio-economic variables.
Democracy; Human rights; Mortality rates; Socioeconomic determinants of health; Women's health
The pre-ejection period of the right ventricle in d-transposition of the great arteries is known to be prolonged, compared with the same interval of the left ventricle of normal subjects. In the present study, the echocardiographic measurement of the components of the pre-ejection period of the right ventricle of 14 patients with d-transposition of the great arteries shows that the isometric contraction time of the right ventricle in d-transposition of the great arteries is similar to the same interval calculated on the left ventricle of 76 normal children of comparable age. On the other hand, the electromechanical delay was significantly greater for the right ventricle of d-transposition of the great arteries than for the left ventricle of the normal subjects. It is concluded that the prolonged pre-ejection period of the right ventricle in d-transposition of the great arteries is not the result of right ventricular dysfunction but solely of a longer electromechanical delay.
The clinical and necropsy findings in four cases of interrupted right aortic arch and right descending aorta associated with DiGeorge syndrome (congenital absence or hypoplasia of the thymus and parathyroids) are described. All patients had a mirror image of type B interruption, namely a right aortic arch with reversed branching pattern and an interruption between the right common carotid and right subclavian artery. In two patients there was a doubly committed subarterial ventricular septal defect and in the two other patients there was a perimembranous septal defect. Three patients had a bicuspid aortic valve. In a consecutive series of 185 necropsies in infants and children with congenital heart disease there were no cases of interrupted right aortic arch that were not associated with DiGeorge syndrome. These observations and previous reports indicate that the concurrence of these two rare conditions is more than fortuitous. In patients with an interrupted aortic arch the clinician should be aware of the common association with DiGeorge syndrome. If the interruption is associated with a right-sided descending aorta it is highly probable that the patient has DiGeorge syndrome.
Over an 11-year period, 22 children have been operated upon at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, for vascular compression of the trachea and esophagus. Thirteen had a double aortic arch; three, a right aortic arch and left ligamentum arteriosum; three, an anomalous innominate artery; and one, an aberrant right subclavian artery. An unusual case of right aortic arch, aberrant left subclavian artery and left ligamentum arteriosum is reported for the first time. One child with an anomalous left pulmonary artery producing emphysema of the right lung is also described. One death occurred during the process of intubation, and three patients died postoperatively despite tracheotomy. These children were in serious condition, and the importance of rigid preoperative and postoperative care, avoiding tracheotomy if possible, is emphasized.
Despite the almost universal ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, summits and conferences organized by international and local agencies, the awareness campaigns and the immense work performed by nongovernmental organizations, too many children continue to endure hardship. It is estimated that 8.4 million children are involved in the worst forms of child labour, namely labour that involves forced or bonded labour, sexual exploitation, illicit work and armed conflicts.
The impact of such activities on the survival, health (both physical and mental) and development of children is devastating. Girls are particularly vulnerable. But children are resilient, and although longitudinal data on the validity of the programmes are not yet available, rehabilitation programs adapted to their own culture and reinsertion in their communities have shown positive results.
Along with monitoring, research, education and rehabilitation, paediatricians have the responsibility, as physicians and advocates for children, to promote the respect of children’s rights while, at the same time, searching for solutions to eradicate poverty and prevent war. There should be zero tolerance for those who violate children’s rights.
Child labour; Child prostitute; Child soldier
Measuring quality of life (QOL) helps to delineate mechanisms underlying the interaction of disease and psychosocial factors. In adults, epileptic foci in the left temporal lobe led to lower QOL and higher depression and anxiety as compared to the right-sided foci. No study addressed the development of QOL disturbances depending on the lateralization of epileptogenic focus. The objective of our study was to examine QOL in children with lateralized epileptiform discharges.
Thirty-one parents of children with epilepsy filled the Health-Related Quality of Life in Childhood Epilepsy Questionnaire (QOLCE). Fifteen children had foci in the left hemisphere and sixteen in the right, as verified with Electroencephalography (EEG) examinations.
We found a significant correlation between foci lateralization and reduced QOL (Spearman's rho = 0.361, p < 0.046). Children with right hemispheric foci exhibited lower overall QOL, particularly in five areas: anxiety, social-activities, stigma, general-health, and quality-of-life.
We demonstrated for the first time that in children left- and right-hemispheric foci were associated with discordant QOL scores. Unlike in adults, foci in the right hemisphere led to worse emotional and social functioning demonstrating that seizures impact the brain differentially during development.
Line bisection performance in children has been hypothesized to be a measure of corpus callosum maturation. Several previous studies have shown that normal prepubescent children bisect lines to the right of true center with their right hand and to the left with their left hand (symmetrical neglect). In contrast, children entering puberty reportedly bisect lines to the left with both the right and left hands (pseudoneglect). The shift from symmetrical to pseudoneglect has been hypothesized to reflect corpus callosum maturation and its involvement in the transfer of attention-based visuospatial processes. In the current study, line bisection performance and MR quantitative corpus callosum volumes were examined in 46 healthy children ages 8–18 years. A linear relationship between corpus callosum volume and age was found. However, the expected age-contingent line bisection performance pattern was not observed. In addition to the expected two patterns of line bisection bias, pseudoneglect and symmetric neglect, two additional distinct patterns of line bisection were identified. These findings, and other findings in the literature, raise important questions about the reliability and validity of the line bisection test. No relationship was found between corpus callosum volume and amount or direction of line bisection deviation. Our findings do not support previous hypotheses regarding line bisection-corpus callosum relationship.
MRI; corpus callosum; spatial attention; line bisection
This study was conducted to determine whether school-aged children who had experienced a perinatal stroke demonstrate evidence of persistent spatial neglect, and if such neglect was specific to the visual domain or was more generalized. Two studies were carried out. In the first, 38 children with either left hemisphere (LH) or right hemisphere (RH) damage and 50 age-matched controls were given visual cancellation tasks varying in two factors: target stimuli and stimulus array. In the second study, tactile neglect was evaluated in 41 children with LH or RH damage and 72 age-matched controls using a blindfolded manual exploration task. On the visual cancellation task, LH subjects omitted more target stimuli on the right, but also on the left, compared with controls. Children with RH lesions also produced a larger number of omissions on both the left and right sides than controls, but with poorer performance on the left. On the manual exploration task, LH children required significantly longer times to locate the target on both sides of the board than did controls. RH children had significantly prolonged search times on the left side, but not on the right, compared with controls. In both tasks, LH subjects employed unsystematic search strategies more often than both control and RH children. The search strategy of RH children also tended to be erratic when compared to controls, but only in the random arrays of the visual cancellation tasks; structure of the target stimuli improved their organization. These results demonstrate that children with early LH brain damage display bilateral difficulties in visual and tactile modalities; a pattern that is in contrast to that seen in adults with LH damage. This may result from disorganized search strategies or other subtle spatial or attentional deficits. Results of performance of RH children suggests the presence of contralateral neglect in both the visual and tactile modalities; a finding that is similar to the neglect in adult stroke patients with RH lesions. The fact that deficits in spatial attention and organizational strategies are present after very early focal damage to either the LH or the RH broadens our understanding of the differences in functional lateralization between the immature and mature brain. These results also add to evidence for limitations to plasticity in the developing brain. Our findings may have therapeutic and rehabilitative implications for the management of children with early focal brain lesions.
spatial neglect; perinatal stroke; extrapersonal space; tactile neglect; visual neglect
Qualitative observations have revealed that children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) show increased overflow movements, a motor sign thought to reflect impaired inhibitory control. The goal of this study was to develop and implement methods for quantifying excessive mirror overflow movements in children with ADHD.
Fifty right-handed children aged 8.2–13.3 years, 25 with ADHD (12 girls) and 25 typically developing (TD) control children (10 girls), performed a sequential finger-tapping task, completing both left-handed (LHFS) and right-handed finger sequencing (RHFS). Phasic overflow of the index and ring fingers was assessed in 34 children with video recording, and total overflow in 48 children was measured by calculating the total angular displacement of the index and ring fingers with electrogoniometer recordings.
Phasic overflow and total overflow across both hands were greater in children with ADHD than in TD children, particularly during LHFS. Separate gender analyses revealed that boys, but not girls, with ADHD showed significantly more total phasic overflow and total overflow than did their gender-matched control children.
The quantitative overflow measures used in this study support past qualitative findings that motor overflow persists to a greater degree in children with ADHD than in age-matched TD peers. The quantitative findings further suggest that persistence of mirror overflow is more prominent during task execution of the nondominant hand and reveal gender-based differences in developmental neural systems critical to motor control. These quantitative measures will assist future physiologic investigation of the brain basis of motor control in ADHD.
Studies relating chronic otitis media and language disorders in children have not reported consistent findings. We carried out the first selective study aimed at discerning the role of chronic right otitis media in children less than 3 years of age in language development. A total of 35 children were studied using a full linguistic protocol, auditory brainstem responses, and middle latency responses. Twelve children had a history of chronic exclusive right otitis media. Seventeen age-matched children were selected as controls. Also, three children having a history of chronic left otitis media were compared with three age-matched controls. Linguistic tests showed significant differences between patients and controls in phonetic, phonological, and syntax scores but not semantics. Correlation studies between linguistic scores and auditory evoked responses in the whole cohort showed a significant coefficient in phonetic and phonological domains. These results emphasize the causative effect of right ear chronic otitis media and indicate that it mainly impairs phonetic and phonological coding of sounds, which may have implications for prophylactic treatment of at-risk children.
We investigated repetitive and stereotyped behavior (RSB) and its relationship to morphometric measures of the basal ganglia and thalami in 3-4 year old children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD; n=77) and developmental delay without autism (DD; n=34). Children were assessed through clinical evaluation and parent report using RSB-specific scales extracted from the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS), the Autism Diagnostic Interview, and the Aberrant Behavior Checklist. A subset of children with ASD (n=45), DD (n=14) and a group of children with typical development (TD; n=25) were also assessed by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Children with ASD demonstrated elevated RSB across all measures compared to children with DD. Enlargement of the left and right striatum, more specifically the left and right putamen, and left caudate, was observed in the ASD compared to the TD group. However, nuclei were not significantly enlarged after controlling for cerebral volume. The DD group, in comparison to the ASD group, demonstrated smaller thalami and basal ganglia regions even when scaled for cerebral volume, with the exception of the left striatum, left putamen, and right putamen. Elevated RSB, as measured by the ADOS, was associated with decreased volumes in several brain regions: left thalamus, right globus pallidus, left and right putamen, right striatum and a trend for left globus pallidus and left striatum within the ASD group. These results confirm earlier reports that RSB is common early in the clinical course of ASD and, furthermore, demonstrate that such behaviors may be associated with decreased volumes of the basal ganglia and thalamus.
Longer survival after the total repair of the Tetralogy of Fallot increases the importance of late complications such as right ventricular dysfunction. This is a prospective study of the right ventricular function in totally corrected Tetralogy of Fallot patients versus healthy children.
Thirty-two healthy children were prospectively compared with 30 totally corrected Tetralogy of Fallot patients. Right ventricular myocardial tissue velocities, right ventricular myocardial performance index, and tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion were investigated as well as the presence and severity of pulmonary regurgitation.
The two groups were age-and sex-matched. Mean systolic peak velocity (Sa) and tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion were significantly decreased, while myocardial performance index and early to late diastolic velocity (Ea/Aa) were significantly increased in the Tetralogy of Fallot patients. Early diastolic velocity (Ea) showed no significant difference between the two groups. Sa correlated significantly with tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion in both the normal children and totally corrected Tetralogy of Fallot patients. Myocardial performance index was significantly higher in the patients with moderate to severe pulmonary regurgitation than in those with mild regurgitation. However, there was no significant correlation between this index and right ventricular myocardial tissue velocities.
In this study, systolic right ventricular function indices (Sa and tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion) were impaired in the totally corrected Tetralogy of Fallot patients. Myocardial performance index was affected by the severity of pulmonary regurgitation.
Tetralogy of Fallot; Tricuspid valve; Elasticity imaging technique; Child; Heart ventricles
Aberrant subclavian artery (arteria lusoria) is a rare congenital anomaly that usually does not produce symptoms. Symptomatic patients require surgical intervention. The operative approach to correct this condition has been controversial. Herein, we describe surgical approaches to the aberrant right subclavian artery.
From 2000 through 2004, 3 children and 1 adult with aberrant right subclavian artery underwent operation. Our surgical approach varied according to the age of the patient. A muscle-sparing right thoracotomy was used in the pediatric patients, and a supraclavicular approach was used in the adult. Patients were treated successfully by division of the aberrant right subclavian artery and translocation to the right common carotid artery, without graft interposition. There was no operative or late morbidity or death. Symptoms were completely relieved in all patients.
Although an extrathoracic approach is applicable and reliable for adult patients, we believe that adequate exposure for the described procedure is best accomplished through a right thoracotomy in pediatric patients. This approach enables optimal mobilization of the distal right subclavian artery without leaving a long stump and enables direct anastomosis to the ipsilateral carotid artery.
Adult; aorta, thoracic/abnormalities; child; deglutition disorders/etiology; esophageal stenosis/etiology; subclavian artery/abnormalities/surgery; respiratory insufficiency/etiology; vascular surgical procedures/methods
The unbridled use of modern medical skills and technology in preserving life at all costs has stimulated interest in expressing a 'right to die' by the legally competent patient who is anxious to protect his autonomy. Some recent decisions by American courts are seen to threaten this 'right to die' of competent patients and imply that legally incompetent patients including children should not have this right under any circumstances, even when expressed on their behalf by guardians, nearest relatives or parents. It is argued that this is contrary to 'natural justice' as viewed by most people. It should be possible to develop procedures which are protective of the basic 'right to life' of the incompetent yet will recognise circumstances where they could be allowed to die. This paper was presented at the 1983 annual conference of the London Medical Group, 'Human Rights in Medicine'.