The Medical Ethical Case of Terry Schiavo Analytical Essay by Nicky

The Medical Ethical Case of Terry Schiavo
Looks at the case of Terry Schiavo as an example of the medical ethics controversy involved in issues of the extension of life.
# 146938 | 1,735 words | 3 sources | MLA | 2011 | US
Published on Jan 26, 2011 in Law (Wills and Probate) , Law (Historic Trials) , Medical and Health (General) , Ethics (General)

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This paper describes the legal conflict to remove life support from Terry Schiavo, who was in a persistent vegetative state. Her husband Michael Schiavo argued for termination because of her loss of quality of life; whereas, her parents argued against this action because they believed that Terry, as a Catholic ,would have chosen to live. Next, the author examines additional issues of whether withdrawing life support is a type of euthanasia and whether extending life is a natural or unnatural process. The paper concludes that neither the husband's nor the parents' argument was valid and the law in the end is moot because Terry Schiavo did not create a formal living will.

From the Paper:

"With regards to individual rights and freedoms, Goldberg claims that mental competence is the key. Like many who supported Terry Schiavo's parents, Goldberg claims that individuals in a persistent vegetative state are unable to express how they feel about life support or life extension. Their inability to communicate or lack of mental competence means that they should be kept on life support. Removing Terry's life support without her express consent would be infringing on her personal rights and freedoms. "

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Caplan, Arthur L., McCartney, James J., Sisti, Dominic A. "The Case of Terry Schiavo: Ethics at the End of Life." The Journal of Legal Medicine 28. 2007.
  • Crow, Laura. "Extreme Measures: A Personal Story of Letting Go." Death Studies 30. 2006.
  • Goldberg, Richard T. "The 'Right' to Die: The Case for and Against Voluntary Passive Euthanasia." Disability, Handicap, and Society 2(1). 1987.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

The Medical Ethical Case of Terry Schiavo (2011, January 26) Retrieved January 23, 2021, from

MLA Format

"The Medical Ethical Case of Terry Schiavo" 26 January 2011. Web. 23 January. 2021. <>