Surgery>>>>>Ethics, Palliative Care, and Care at the End of Life
Question 4#

When discussing possible surgical options with a patient, it is appropriate to do all of the following EXCEPT:

a. Document that the patient is capable of rendering informed consent
b. Ask the patient to identify a surrogate health care decision maker in the event he/she is incapable of deciding treatment choices
c. Avoid discussing the "pain and suffering" aspects of a treatment plan
d. Provide an opportunity for the patient to ask questions or to deliberate with others if the condition permits

Correct Answer is C


The obligation of the surgeon is to ensure that the patient is competent and understands the discussion of treatment options. If the condition is not an emergency, the patient should be allowed to consult with others or to ask for time to consider their response. All aspects of the expected course and treatment options, including symptoms, side-effects and complications, should be discussed.