How is an advance directive used in relation to euthanasia?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner

An advance directive is a written document that contains your wishes regarding medical and end-of-life issues. An advance directive may include any one of three documents: the medical power of attorney, the DNR (do not resuscitate order), and the living will. These documents may sometimes be called by different names in different states or may be combined into other formats, but the content remains virtually the same. The medical power of attorney (POA) states who is legally responsible to make medical decisions for you if you are no longer able to do so. The DNR will state that you do not want any form of CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, if your heart or lungs stop. A living will clearly explains the medical, life-sustaining procedures you don't want if something happens to you and you cannot give or deny consent. These procedures may include feeding tubes, respirators, ventilators, or any form of resuscitation. An advance directive would be used to determine your wishes if you were no longer able to communicate.

Continue Learning about Healthcare Basics

What does an ambulatory pharmacist do?
Angela Green, PharmDAngela Green, PharmD
An ambulatory pharmacist works with a primary care provider (PCP) and plays an integral role in pati...
More Answers
How often does an adult congenital heart specialist follow up with patient?
Univ. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family MedicineUniv. of Nev. School of Medicine, Family Medicine
An adult congenital heart specialist determines how often a person needs a follow-up visit based on ...
More Answers
How can my family doctor help prevent chronic disease?
HCA VirginiaHCA Virginia
At your annual wellness exam (which is covered by insurance), your family doctor will work with you ...
More Answers
Am I Normal? 6 Body Issues Explained
Am I Normal? 6 Body Issues ExplainedAm I Normal? 6 Body Issues ExplainedAm I Normal? 6 Body Issues ExplainedAm I Normal? 6 Body Issues Explained
If you’ve gained a little weight or your hair is a bit thinner, check out some common problems and what they may mean for your health. Ever wake up an...
Start Slideshow

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.