Friday, November 7, 2008

Medical decision-making and the child with a DSD

One thing we can learn from the history of DSD treatment is that “common-sense” assumptions don’t always apply in these unique cases. Currently, practitioners who recommend elective surgery for children with DSDs rely on the belief that parental consent is sufficient authorization. However, given the medical, legal and ethical complexity of the decisions involved, it may be time to reconsider the entire decision-making process, beginning with who should be at the table.

Anne Tamar-Mattis, JD, is Executive Director of Advocates for Informed Choice, Cotati, Calf. She welcomes responses to this article at

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