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15 UCLA L. Rev. 357 (1967-1968)
Medical Advance and Legal Lag: Hemodialysis and Kidney Transplantation

handle is hein.journals/uclalr15 and id is 359 raw text is: MEDICAL ADVANCE AND LEGAL LAG:
HEMODIALYSIS AND KIDNEY
TRANSPLANTATION
David Sanders* and
Jesse Dukeminier, Jr.**
The chief force in the world today is technology-of which
medical technology is no small part. The spectacular recent advances
of medical science have created unprecedented legal and ethical
problems, often unrecognized and little discussed in legal literature.
Medical science is creating and allocating resources of the greatest
value; use of the resource means life, denial means death. When
great power over resources is wielded in our society, the law sooner
or later must become concerned about who exercises that power, by
what procedures, for what purposes. If society, with its chief instru-
ment, law, does not tame technology, technology may destroy our
sense of ethics-and man himself.
Rapid strides in the treatment of chronic kidney failure have
brought us face to face with three of the most formidable problems
in the creation and allocation of medical resources:
1. The allocation of scarce resources, where continuing treat-
ment and supporting personnel are required.
2. The allocation of organs for transplantation.
3. The creation of resources by salvaging cadaver organs.
No medical advances in recent years have raised so much contro-
versy among physicians as the developments in treating chronic ure-
mia. Chronic uremia, usually a fatal disease, is now being treated by
hemodialysis (the artificial kidney) or by transplanting into the
patient a human kidney from a live donor or a cadaver. In the con-
text of treatment for uremia, the three problems above can be re-
phrased as questions:
* A.B., Columbia University, 1946; M.D., Long Island College of Medicine,
1949; M.P.H., Columbia University, 1959. Director of Community Services, Division
of Psychiatry, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles; Assistant Clinical Professor
of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, and Lecturer, School of Public Health, University
of California, Los Angeles.
** A.B., Harvard University, 1948; LL.B., Yale University, 1951. Professor of
Law, University of California, Los Angeles. We gratefully acknowledge the research
assistance of Lynne Geyser and Carol Freis, students at the UCLA Law School.
357

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