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Published on July 23rd, 2012 | by Steven Hodson

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Shades Of Mad Scientists – Two Neurosurgeons Banned From Human Research For Infecting Brain Tumor Patients





Ethics can be a slippery slop and they are at their slipperiest when it comes to medical research using human patients but this is something that UC Davis neurosurgeons J. Paul Muizelaar and Rudolph J. Schrot seem to have forgotten.

Both neurosurgeons have been accused of using terminally ill brain cancer patients for some experiments and doing them without the University’s permission. While bot surgeons claim that the whole situation is misleading the idea of that using these terminally ill patients as a testing ground to see if introducing bacteria into their open head wounds in the assumption that this might prolong their lives doesn’t seem to be all that misleading.

Making matters even worse two of the patients developed sepsis and died.

Documents show the surgeons got the consent of three terminally ill patients with malignant brain tumors to introduce bacteria into their open head wounds, under the theory that postoperative infections might prolong their lives. Two of the patients developed sepsis and died, the university later determined.

The actions – described by two prominent bioethicists as “astonishing,” and a “major penalty” for the school – threaten both the doctors’ professional careers and the university’s reputation and federal-funding status.

“This is really distressing” said Patricia Backlar, an Oregon bioethicist who served on former President Bill Clinton’s national bioethics advisory commission.

via Sacramento Bee

While both surgeons have said that they didn’t “blatantly” break any rules they believed that the treatment would be beneficial to the patients.

via io9

 

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About the Author

Steven has been around the tech world long enough to see most of the stuff we think of cool happen before which leads to a certain bit of cynicism that has contributed to him being known as the cranky old fart of the Internet. Besides sharing some of the goodness that he finds with you here at 42x you can also find him curating some digital goodness at Winextra (tech type stuff) and Rotten Gumdrops (for your daily dose of WTF).



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