Friday, December 11, 2009

Ethical Dilemmas...

If you have been following my blog for a while now, you will know my feelings on ethics committees...It is such a grey topic and really no 2 people will believe the same thing (unless...)

Last night in school we continued our ongoing conditions discussions. We were focussing on the Nervous System - which really hits close to home for me. With Faiths epilepsy, acquired brain injury, and a lot of the signs and symptoms we are seeing with her.

Some of the other Nervous System conditions we talked about were Multiple Sclerosis, Huntington's and Parkinsons. A really difficult class to be in.

We watched a video that focussed on stem cell research and how the embryonic stem cells were unethical, because they have the potential to become a human being.

I know that from some of my own research, I have seen that stem cells can possibly replace lost brain tissue (which would be amazing to be able to do) and have dreamt and thought about those possibilities with Faith - she has a black spot, a hole in her left frontal lobe.

How awesome could it be to be able to have the medical world replace brain cells!!

My question is about all these "embryos" in fertility centres, that people are not going to use. Is it unethical to use them for stem cell research and to help cure conditions such as Parkinsons? Or how about when they need to be disposed of? Is it more ethical to just "throw them out?"

Can a parent "donate" their "extra" embryos to science?

It brings up a whole other discussion...what is going to happen to all the "extras"? (don't you love my overuse of quotations here?)

I think I heard that the embryos have less then 200 cells while they are just sitting in these they constitue life?

Don't get me wrong, I am not wanting to stir the pot (too much), but I have become really interested in this area, because of Faiths condition and knowing that there could be a HUGE beneficial outcome with this research!!

If there is a way to cure some of these ongoing conditions, that right now have no cure...and people just die (not necessarily from the condition) but the end of their life is hell on earth...can the cure really be unethical?

Please, tell me what you think!


  1. I have always believed that if someone needed what I have or had (if I died) in my body, inside and out, that I would give it to them.

    I am an organ and tissue donor and I have a DNR request (in that do not keep me on a ventilator, do what is necessary but let me go if that's what needs to be done) hubby's not too happy about that.

    If I can share something of me and heaven forbid of my children if something happened to them, I would in a heart beat. So with my limited knowledge in this particular area... if my embryos - can be used to help someone heal... I would do it. If someone would tell me how to donate my eggs to someone who needs them, I'd do that too.

    This might not be the main line "Christian" view or I may even be judged as being an evil Pastor's wife with this opinion but it's my opinion.

    We can't take our bodies with us and I do not want give birth to more than I already have and actually, I see it as being fruitful and multiplying. Taking what I have and helping something/someone else grow/live.

  2. There is a difference between donating your eggs and an embryo. An embryo is a fertilized egg. Did you know you can adopt an embryo from an embryo bank where people have decided to not use all the embryos they had frozen? An embryo is already life set in motion.

  3. It's a difficult issue especially if you have a child or other loved one who could benefit from stem cell research.

    My own research, however, uncovered the remarkable fact that all of the major discoveries and medical breakthroughs have been garnered from adult stem cells such as from the umbilical cord. Not one breakthrough has come from embryonic stem cells.

    I know they say some may come or are in early development but actual breakthroughs have come from adult stem cells. According to what I have read, anyway.