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Should I Have a Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) Order?

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It’s important to include both your health care provider and family members when discussing a living will and the choice to have CPR or do-not-resuscitate (DNR) orders.
November 24, 2022 ★ 

Planning ahead and having advanced directives in place, such as a living will, power of attorney and health care surrogate, can help your loved ones prepare and be informed of your wishes.

Seasons’ recent article entitled “Should I get a DNR even if my family disagrees?” says that DNR orders tell the health care professionals not to perform CPR on an adult, if they go into cardiac arrest (their heart stops).

Every state has a different form that’s signed by the patient/medical power of attorney and a health care provider.

Without this form, the health care professionals must initiate and continue CPR.

The article explains that as we get older and have multiple health issues, CPR is less effective. Survival rates with CPR out of the hospital have been reported to be between 10-20%.

Even if an individual is brought back to life after CPR, they’re not likely to return to their normal state of health, especially seniors.

These types of damage are common afterward: brain damage, heart damage, lung injury, broken ribs and lung injury.

Opting for CPR may not be recommended if you’re experiencing the following:

  • Life-limiting disease that won’t improve life span or quality of life with CPR
  • Being diagnosed with a terminal disease and in hospice; or
  • Increased age and dependence on others for care and support.

Family members are frequently resistant to a conversation about end-of-life planning and DNR status. That’s usually because of their fears and misinformation.

It’s smart to involve family in your discussions with health care professionals regarding DNR status and end-of-life decision-making. Your health care professionals can help steer these challenging conversations.

Reference: Seasons (Sep. 16, 2022) “Should I get a DNR even if my family disagrees?”

Suggested Key Terms: Senior Health, CPR Do-Not-Resuscitate (DNR) Order

Law Firm of Benjamin Eckman
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Wayne, NJ 07470

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Hackensack, NJ 07601

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Union, NJ 07083

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By Appointment Only:

73 Mt. View Blvd.,
Wayne, NJ 07470

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1 University Drive, Suite 609
Hackensack, NJ 07601

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