It is easy to say that you would do absolutely anything to prolong your death if you have a terminal illness, but this story really made me think about me having a terminal illness and what I would do. In the story, the doctors told Sara about the new drug Tarceva, and told her that the response rate to this drug was eighty-five percent. This was great news to Sara because that sounds like a good response rate no matter who you tell that to. Most patients try to fight cancer with whatever the doctors tell them will possibly work. When Tarceva did not work on Sara’s cancer cells, the doctors prescribed more treatment and more drugs. These did not work either, but the doctors just kept prescribing more. This is just like medicine now because the doctors always want to keep pushing for patients to try new medicines, even if they have given up hope. Eventually, Sara realizes that she is running out of time, and she has to make a choice–to keep doing treatment to prolong her death for a few months, or enjoy the rest of the time she has without constantly going through treatment.
This story really makes the reader think about what they would choose if this ever happened to them. Of course, readers do not consider what their choice would be until it is actually happening to them. When medicine cannot save a patient’s life, I think that doctors should just stop putting the patient through so much treatment. The doctors should let them live the few months they have left without constantly having to be worried about treatment. Also, many patients get tired when they do treatment and do not even have the energy to get up.
When my dad was diagnosed with lung cancer, he did the chemotherapy treatments, and the last few months of his life, he was not even himself. Most of the time, he was laying in bed, and sometimes it was hard to keep a conversation with him because he was not completely himself. I think after my experience with cancer, my opinion is that when the doctors know for sure that they cannot save a patient’s life, they need to stop suggesting new treatments just to prolong their death.
What is a few more months to a person if they do not even act like themselves, or they are constantly hooked up to a machine? If a patient chooses to keep doing new treatments, then yes, the doctor should keep trying, but if a patient is standing on their last leg with nowhere else to turn, in my opinion, the doctors should just let their patient live out the rest of their life enjoying it the best they can.