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The Ashley Treatment: Practical, but Ethical? Essay

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The Ashley Treatment: Practical, But Ethical?
- Hitler times – medical experiments
- Kennedy sister – lobotomy
- Potential grave consequences that can result from irresponsible, or criminal, medical experiments. While we must be vigilant to protect innocent victims from such experimentation we cannot let that stifle our duty to continue making advances in healthcare and improving the lives of patients.
- Moral obligations should typically not be so demanding that enormous sacrificies must be made in order to fulfill them (Liao, Savulescu, & Sheehan, 2007).
- Beauchamp and Childress – ethical principles of autonomy
- One must ask if a treatment is practical does that make it ethical?

‘Hopes of keeping her as comfortable as
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Research has shown that females with disabilities are twice likely to suffer sexual abuse as females without disabilities (Clark & Vasta, 2007)
Reasoning
(1) Less likely to develop skin breakdown, infections and pneumonia.
Limiting Ashley’s adult height would reduce, or possibly stop the progression of her scoliosis and help prevent bone fractures that may occur as she became harder to lift and transfer. (“The Ashley Treatment,” 2007).
(2) Keep her care more manageable, so they could continue to care for her in their home with limited outside help.
Ashley’s physicians, Dr. Daniel Gunther and Dr. Douglas Diekema, and the Seattle Children’s Hospital Board of Ethics approved the series of treatments after much debate and research and concluded it would be in her best interest.

July of 2004, Ashley underwent hysterectomy and breast bud removal. After recovering, she was started on a high dose estrogen therapy which was completed in December 2006.

The Debate
Contrasts those who argue that it violates the child’s human rights and is for the sake of convenience for the parents, versus those who argue that this treatment is in the best interest of the child because it will provide better quality of life (Clark & Vista, 2007).
The fundamental question asks if Ashley loses her human rights because she is unaware of them.

Personal Opinion
This story touches my heart greatly. I have a younger cousin, who
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