What's Wrong with Quality of Life as a Clinical Tool?

2005 Virtual Mentor  
The concept of measuring a patient's quality of life (QoL) has obvious attractions to clinicians. It seems to be an objective, scientific, and quantitative tool to assist in deciding complex clinical and ethical dilemmas in daily practice. Its use has been promoted in many areas of medicine-from prenatal screening to do-not-resuscitate (DNR) decisions at the end of life. In this brief article I shall try to sound a health warning. I shall argue that the concept of measuring QoL is fatally
more » ... , and that, in its current form, it represents a misleading and potentially dangerous avenue for clinical ethics in the context of contemporary social and political pressures.
doi:10.1001/virtualmentor.2005.7.2.pfor1-0502 fatcat:6jkzpgselfehzcxw5u6uihwwoy