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Life and Death in Intensive Care


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Life and Death in Intensive Care

by Joan Cassell (Author)



ISBN: 9781592133352


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A penetrating look at the values, systems, and life-and-death dramas in the surgical intensive care unit.

Life and Death in Intensive Care offers a unique portrait of the surgical intensive care unit (SICU), the place in medical centers and hospitals where patients with the gravest medical conditions-from comas to terminal illness-are treated. Author Joan Cassell employs the concept of u0022moral economiesu0022 to explain the dilemmas that patients, families, and medical staff confront in treatment. Drawing upon her fieldwork conducted in both the United States and New Zealand, Cassell compares the moral outlooks and underlying principles of SICU nurses, residents, intensivists, and surgeons. Using real life examples, Life and Death in Intensive Care clearly presents the logic and values behind the SICU as well as the personalities, procedures, and pressures that characterize every case. Ultimately, Cassell demonstrates the differing systems of values, and the way cultural definitions of medical treatment inform how we treat the critically ill.


ISBN 1592133355
ISBN13 9781592133352
Publisher Temple University Press,U.S.
Format Hardback
Publication date 16/03/2005
Pages 248
Weight (grammes) 445
Published in United States
Height (mm) 5817
Width (mm) 3887

Introduction - Moonscape: The Surgical Intensive Care Unit1. A Caring Ethic: Nurses and the Dilemma of Powerlessness2. The Best of Times, the Worst of Times: The Residents3. Diverse Universes of Medical Discourse: The Fellows4. The Attendings5. Is Death the Enemy, or Suffering?6. Confronting Death in the Surgical Intensive Care Unit7. Intensive Caring in New Zealand8. Going Gentle into that Good Night: Death in Auckland9. Focusing on the Bottom Line10. The Dominion of DeathAppendix - "Hard" Science, "Soft" Science, Social Science:The Anxiety of MethodsNotesReferencesIndex