Sunday 26 March 2017

We can't know another's pain

I thought Ian O'Doherty's piece on euthanasia (Irish Independent, September 3) was excellent. It was insightful, honest and displayed a very human, non-dogmatic and compassionate appreciation of the suffering of terminally ill people.

The simple fact is that palliative care cannot relieve pain in all circumstances. Now in my 60s, I have witnessed lovely, kind, decent friends dying and relatives suffering untreatable, excruciating pain, with all its mental and physical terrors.

In reply to Mr O'Doherty, Thomas Finegan (Letters, September 4) glibly tells us that: "Modern pain relief has ensured that physical suffering is minimised for the terminally ill.''

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