Doctor criticised after saying cancer is ‘the best way to die’

  • Community Manager - Posts: 120
    21/01/2015  14:31

    After a recent controversial article in the British Medical Journal where Dr Richard Smith claimed cancer was the best way to die, Cancer Research UK have published a extensive rebuttal that you might be interested in reading:   


    http://scienceblog.cancerresearchuk.org/2015/01/19/cancer-the-best-way-to-die-you-couldnt-be-more-wrong-if-you-tried/


    Thanks

  • Community Manager - Posts: 120
    Edited by: MarkWilkin - 21/01/2015 16:07

    Another response is this blog post by Laura Middleton-Green, lecturer and researcher in palliative and end of life care at the University of Bradford.  

  • Posts: 27
    13/04/2015  13:48

    I must have missed the origin of this 'best way to die' debate. It seems I heard Karol Sikora being asked about something somebody else had written, without my picking up on that point.


    I sent an e-mail to Professor Karol Sikhora, after I heard him on BBC Radio 4 on January 2nd. After he had commented that most deaths from cancer can now be relatively pain-free, the interviewer asked Prof Sikhora 'so would you prefer death from cancer ?'. He said the equivalent of 'no - I would prefer to go to bed, and die painlessly in my sleep, just before I would otherwise have started to suffer 'any of the nastier bits of dying''.


    I pointed out to him, that I also would prefer to die that way - but that because this counts (according to current police behaviour) as 'an unexpected death', the relatives tend to be treated by the police 'as if they are suspects in a murder', so 'the best death for the patient, isn't the best death for the live-with relatives': he agreed with me.

  • Posts: 8
    20/01/2018  22:47

    'best way to die' debate. It seems I heard Karol being asked about something somebody else had written, without my picking up on that point.


    I sent an e-mail to Professor Karol Sikhora, after I heard him on BBC Radio 4 on January 2nd. After he had commented that most deaths from cancer can now be relatively pain-free, the interviewer asked Prof Sikhora 'so would you prefer death from cancer ?'. He said the equivalent of 'no - I would prefer to go to bed, and die painlessly in my sleep, just before I would otherwise have started to suffer 'any of the nastier bits of dying''.


    I pointed out to him, that I also would prefer to die that way - but that because this counts (according to current police behaviour) as 'an unexpected death', the relatives tend to be treated by the police 'as if they are suspects in a murder', so 'the best death for the patient, isn't the best death for the live-with relatives': he agreed with me.

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  • Posts: 8
    20/01/2018  22:49

    Was reading your post my mother had a lot of illnesses and passed away at home just as you said had police at her home for 6 hours and couldn’t go near mum it was terrible this should be addressed and changed as the death is bad enough

  • Posts: 159
    Edited by: Support - 22/01/2018 10:29

    Hi Mazey

     

    I am sorry to read about the death of your mum and the experience you had. When a death is unexpected (i.e. the person has not seen there GP for 14 days or more) it may need to be reported to a coroner. A coroner is a doctor or lawyer responsible for investigating unexpected deaths. They may call for a post-mortem or inquest to find out the cause of death. In these cases it is standard that Police attend. Their attendance is simply routine and should not cause concern. I am sorry that this wasn't your experience.

     

    Many people tell us that talking about their experience helps them to process their feelings and thoughts. If you would like to discuss this more please call our Freephone Support Line on 0800 090 2309, or drop us a line via Web Chat: https://www.mariecurie.org.uk/help/support/marie-curie-support-line

     

    Best Wishes

     

    Brigette

    Marie Curie Support Line

     

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