McMaster University

McMaster University

Transfusion and Hematology Session 3

Case part 2: Consent for blood products

You ask Tracy's parents for their consent to the surgery and they agree without hesitation. You then begin to explain that she has lost a great deal of blood and that a transfusion is required to prevent her blood pressure from dropping dangerously low during the surgery. Mr. and Mrs. Callier look crestfallen, barely able to speak through their tears they tell you that a transfusion is impossible, that they are committed Jehovah's Witnesses and they love their daughter deeply but they cannot allow her to receive a transfusion of blood.

Suggestion questions for discussion:

  1. Can the parents of a child needing life sustaining treatment refuse that treatment?
  2. What options are available to Tracy?
  3. Why was Tracy not offered alternative blood products from the start?
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