suicide

1. The act of taking one's own life. 2. A person who commits such an act. [L. sui, self, + caedo, to kill]
- physician-assisted s. voluntary termination of one's own life by administration of a lethal substance with the direct or indirect assistance of a physician. Physician-assisted s. is to be distinguished from the withholding or discontinuance of life-support measures in terminal or vegetative states so that the patient dies of the underlying illness, and from administration of narcotic analgesics in terminal cancer, which may indirectly hasten death. SEE ALSO: end-of-life care, advance directive.Questions and controversies about assisted s. have become widespread within the health care community and society at large. The U.S. Supreme Court, in a 9–0 decision, has ruled that citizens have no constitutional right to physician-assisted s., but has placed no obstacles to legalization of the practice by state legislatures. Under Oregon law any mentally competent resident of the state who has reached the age of 18, and who has a terminal illness that is expected to cause death within 6 months, may make a voluntary and informed decision to terminate life by taking a lethal overdose of oral medicine prescribed for that purpose by a physician. The physician is immune from civil or criminal prosecution. Despite the legalization of physician-assisted s. in at least one state, and the highly publicized activities of “death doctors” in other states, the American Medical Association and the American Nurses Association have issued official position statements opposing assisted s. in all circumstances. Among objections voiced by opponents of the legalization of physician-assisted s. and its integration into medical practice are the erosion of public trust in the health care professions; the radical change in the traditional physician-patient relationship; the concern that if physician-assisted s. were to become an accepted option for the “treatment” of certain illnesses, physicians might be required to present it to patients as an alternative, and managed-care or other third-party payers might favor it as least expensive; and the fear that, once legal, physician-assisted s. would be permitted for conditions not terminal, and that people other than the patient would eventually be empowered to make the decision. The debate over physician-assisted s. has drawn attention to shortcomings in the care of dying persons and to the preeminent obligation of health care professionals to provide responsible, respectful, appropriate, and ethically sound care.

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sui·cide 'sü-ə-.sīd n
1) the act or an instance of taking one's own life voluntarily and intentionally
2) a person who commits or attempts suicide
suicide vb, sui·cid·ed; sui·cid·ing vi to commit suicide vt to put (oneself) to death

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n.
self-destruction as a deliberate act. Distinction is usually made between attempted suicide, when death is averted although the person concerned intended to kill himself (or herself), and parasuicide, when the attempt is made for reasons other than actually killing oneself.

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su·i·cide (sooґĭ-sīd) [L. sui of himself + -cide] the taking of one's own life.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • SUICIDE — Le suicide trahit au premier chef le désir de surmonter l’irréversibilité, mais dans l’antécédence. «C’est parfois la peur de la mort qui pousse les hommes à la mort», disait Épicure. Mais qu’est ce que cette crainte de la mort, sinon l’attente… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Suicide — • The act of one who causes his own death, either by positively destroying his own life, as by inflicting on himself a mortal wound or injury, or by omitting to do what is necessary to escape death, as by refusing to leave a burning house… …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • suicide — is a major public health problem for China that is only gradually being recognized. During the period from 1995 to 1999, there were an estimated 287,000 suicides each year, which makes suicide the fifth most important cause of death in the… …   Encyclopedia of Contemporary Chinese Culture

  • Suicide — Основная информация Жанры …   Википедия

  • Suicide — Datos generales Origen Nueva York, NY Estado En activo Información artística …   Wikipedia Español

  • suicide — n. The act of killing oneself. v. commit suicide The Essential Law Dictionary. Sphinx Publishing, An imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. Amy Hackney Blackwell. 2008. suicide a killing of …   Law dictionary

  • suicide — deliberate killing of oneself, 1650s, from Mod.L. suicidium suicide, from L. sui of oneself (gen. of se self ), from PIE *s(u)w o one s own, from root *s(w)e (see IDIOM (Cf. idiom)) + cidium a killing (see …   Etymology dictionary

  • suicide — [so͞o′ə sīd΄] n. [L sui, of oneself (< IE * sewe , refl. pron. < base * se , apart > OE swæs, own) + CIDE] 1. the act of killing oneself intentionally 2. ruin of one s interests or prospects through one s own actions, policies, etc. 3. a …   English World dictionary

  • Suicide — Su i*cide, n. [L. sui of one s self (akin to suus one s own) + caedere to slay, to kill. Cf. {So}, adv., {Homicide}.] 1. The act of taking one s own life voluntary and intentionally; self murder; specifically (Law), the felonious killing of one s …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • suicide — ► NOUN 1) the action of killing oneself intentionally. 2) a person who does this. 3) (before another noun ) referring to a military operation carried out by people who do not expect to survive it: a suicide bomber. 4) a course of action which is… …   English terms dictionary

  • Suicide — Allgemeine Informationen Genre(s) Punkrock, New Wave, No Wave Gründung Anfang 1970er …   Deutsch Wikipedia


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