Not the cheeriest of subjects but….. it does make a lot of sense…….
Cancer is the best way to die and there should be less money spent on its cure, a leading doctor says.
Richard Smith, a former editor of the British Medical Journal, has argued that dying from cancer is preferable to a sudden death, organ failure or dementia because it gives someone the best chance to say goodbye and reflect on life.
In a blog post on the medical journal’s website, Dr Smith says most people would prefer a sudden death, if given the choice, but that that was often the hardest for mourning relatives.
He says people who die suddenly risk leaving relationships unhealed, no funeral directions and an unfulfilled life.
He lists the “long, slow” death of dementia as the worst way to die “as you are slowly erased”, while organ failure leaves “far too much in the hospital and in the hands of doctors”.
He concludes “death from cancer is best”.
“You can say goodbye, reflect on your life, leave last messages, perhaps visit special places for a last time, listen to favourite pieces of music, read loved poems, and prepare, according to your beliefs, to meet your maker or enjoy eternal oblivion,” he says.
“This is, I recognise, a romantic view of dying, but it is achievable with love, morphine, and whisky. But stay away from overambitious oncologists, and let’s stop wasting billions trying to cure cancer, potentially leaving us to die a much more horrible death.”
Dr Smith, who is the chairman of the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research and medical records company Patients Know Best, also worked for six years as a TV doctor with the BBC.