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December 10, 2003

End-of-Life Practices in European Intensive Care Units—Reply

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Stephen J. Lurie, MD, PhD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2003;290(22):2938-2940. doi:10.1001/jama.290.22.2938-a

To the Editor: In their study of end-of-life practices in European intensive care units (ICUs), Dr Sprung and colleagues1 describe a shortening of the dying process as a result of the administration of opiates and benzodiazepines. The authors stated that the majority of cases of shortening of the dying process can be equated with euthanasia, because physicians generally intended these actions to cause death.

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