Simply speaking, a liver transplant tends to be a surgical procedure that is carried on the patients suffering from liver ailments, so as to save their life. Liver transplant involves the replacement of a diseased or malfunctioning liver with a healthy liver or a segment of the donated healthy liver…
The second group of liver donors happens to be individuals who are alive and donate a portion of their healthy liver to a patient who has a sick or non-functioning liver. As liver transplant is a procedure that is replete with ethical ramifications, the objective of this paper is to discuss the two opposing ethical arguments pertaining to the issue under consideration, for there is present an intense controversy regarding whether the alcoholic patients ought to be placed on the recipient list for the donated organs, irrespective of the fact that every patient has a right to have access to any available treatment, regardless of one’s disease (Brudney, 2007).
A healthy liver may get damaged owing to a plethora of reasons are they accidents, substance abuse and drug abuse, reckless smoking, alcoholism, inhalation of harmful or poisonous gases from the surrounding environment for prolonged periods of time, and wasting diseases that eventually lead to liver damage. All the patients that suffer from a liver damage owing to either of the reasons mentioned above are usually, urgently in the need of a liver transplant, in case there is available a health donated liver, and the patient being on top of the waiting list contrived for selecting a liver recipient is the one that is considered for a transplant. However, there is a range of ethical issues that govern the practice of liver transplant and the selection of a specific patient who is to receive a donated liver. These ethical issues may include whether the individual whose liver got damaged owing to substance abuse like reckless smoking, drug addiction and consumption of alcohol be considered for a liver transplant, in the presence of patients who are young and did not develop liver issues owing to substance abuse (Bramstedt & Jabbour, 2006).? Should the concerned authorities stick to the waiting list procedure to allocate the donated livers, even when the probable recipient may be an alcoholic, or should the patients who got sick owing to other reasons and do have a higher chance of survival ought to be considered first? Should people who are young and have families and children be given precedence over people who are alcoholics, while allocating the donated livers? No wonder, the number of ethical questions that are imminent on the issue as to whether the alcoholics be placed on the waiting list for donated livers in the face of the fact that there are many other sober patients who developed liver ailments owing to no reason of their own making is limitless (American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, & International Liver Transplantation Society, 2000). These questions could be answered from a range of perspectives like the personal perspective of a particular individual, from the ethical perspectives upheld by the society in particular, and from the perspective of medics and nurses that owe allegiance to the Hippocratic Oath that stresses on saving the life of any individual ...
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