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May 28, 2019

The Last Breath—Enriching End-of-Life Moments

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, New York
JAMA Intern Med. 2019;179(7):865-866. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.1451
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    5 Comments for this article
    Prayer at end of life
    Brenda Hocutt, Mrs, Mom, Mimi, Dada | Med-Mal Defense Paralegal
    I can think of no more meaningful activity for the family to participate in at the death of a loved one than prayer. Thank you.
    CONFLICT OF INTEREST: None Reported
    Enriching end of life
    Ricardo Franco, MD | University of Alabama at Birmingham
    Wonderful piece. Many thanks to you and your family for sharing.
    CONFLICT OF INTEREST: None Reported
    An experience similar to that of the author of the article.
    Rigoberto Marcano, Internal medicine | Medicina Preventiva Santa Fe, Caracas
    Many years ago I witnessed the death of a patient who had a daughter who was a nun; in her last moments, she sang to her father until the moment of his death, something I had never witnessed before; an experience similar to that of the author of the article.
    CONFLICT OF INTEREST: None Reported
    Always something to offer at the bedside
    Pablo Garcia, Geriatrician | Casa de los Ángeles, Guatemala
    Beautiful description.  For physicians, there is always is something to offer, not only in medical terms...also in spiritual terms.  "Patient centered care" is a good approach.
    CONFLICT OF INTEREST: None Reported
    Physicians can be part of the problem
    John Weiser, MP, MPH | Family physician
    Wise advice. But families are sometimes willing to forgo futile interventions while physicians promote them. My mother-in-law recently died during heart surgery but was kept "alive" for another week with a ventilator, ECMO, balloon pump, pacemaker, high dose pressors, and dialysis even though her heart never contracted and she never woke up. Now it is the family, not the doctors, who live with guilt for not being able to protect her.
    CONFLICT OF INTEREST: None Reported
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