Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 2


MD 2Y1-4A

Theresa Ann Campo Pearson, an infant known to the public as “Baby
Theresa,” was born in Florida in 1992. Baby Theresa had anencephaly,
one of the worst genetic disorder. Anencephalic infants are sometimes
referred to as “babies without brains,” and this gives roughly the right
picture, but it is not quite accurate. Important parts of the brain – the
cerebrum and cerebellum – are missing, as is the top of the skull. There is,
however, as brain stem, and so autonomic functions such as breathing and
heartbeat are possible. In the United States, most cases of anencephaly
are detected during the pregnancy, and the fetuses are usually aborted. Of
those not aborted, half are stillborn. About 350 are born alive each year,
and they usually die within days.
Baby Theresa’s story is remarkable only because her parents made an
unusual request. Knowing that their baby would die soon and could never
be conscious, Theresa’s parents volunteered her organs for transplant.
They thought her kidneys, liver, heart, lungs, and eyes should go to other
children who could benefit from them. Her physicians agreed. Thousands
of infants need transplants each year, and there are never enough organs
available. But the organs were not taken, because Florida law forbids the
removal of organs until the donor is dead. By the time Baby Theresa died,
nine days later, it was too late for the children – her organs had
deteriorated too much to be harvested and transplanted.
1. What is the ethical problem in the case?

According to American academy of pediatrics in 1992, Anencephaly is a

congenital defect in which the cranium (part of brain) is absent and the
cerebral cortex is virtually absent. However, vital organs, such as the heart
and kidneys, are often normal. About 1000 to 2000 live anencephalic births
occur annually in this country. Brain stem function enables many
anencephalic infants to survive for hours or days and, in rare cases, for a
few weeks. If it is the case that some organs are in good condition, If I were
the parent, I will do the same, because I think it’s better to donate it, to help
other children. In continuation, according to American academy of
pediatrics in 1992, there is currently a severe shortage of pediatric organs
Among the children younger than 2 years of age registered to receive
transplants, an estimated 30% to 50% die before an organ becomes
available.  In my personal stance, I think the ethical problem is the law in
the states of the Florida. It may be better if the laws are revised, because it
can help the medical sector such as the organ donor sector of every
hospital in Florida to help other sick children who needed transplant.
Although Theresa’s parent volunteered to give her organs, they can’t do the
procedure because, still, in the eyes of the law of Florida, it is unethical.

2. What are the road blocks in making a good decision in the case?
Well as human it is not easy to just decide, because the
emotional connection in your child is one of the greatest moments of
every parents. In case of Theresa and her family. They done morally
good decision, because they could help other infants and children
with medical problems. But on the other side, the decision is not
easy. We human we need to be mentally prepared when doing
decision (Daskal, 2016). Some of the road block in making a good
decision is the ethical standard in the state of Florida. Maybe, it really
hard for them to decide to give the organ of Theresa because of the
laws exist in their community. And also, medically speaking, there is
also an ethical principle for the hospital or doctors to obey, that can
influence in the decision making. In short, they need to obey what the
law dictates because it is ethical in their states, but for me, it is
actually a waste of opportunity for the children who need transplant
because it is very rare opportunity to seek organ donor. For example,
Based on Mayo Clinic, 2010, the cornea of the eye has highest
success rate in organ transplant and the rejection of it is 10 percent
only. Overall, if the law in states in Florida that time listen to them
maybe the organ of baby Theresa helps and give a chance to the sick
children to live normally.