Law School Discussion

Nine Years of Discussion
;

Author Topic: #34 (June '01) section 3, #11 - brain transplants  (Read 273 times)

Harper

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 225
  • works every time
    • AOL Instant Messenger - harperfan02138
    • Yahoo Instant Messenger - harperfan02138
    • View Profile
    • Email
#34 (June '01) section 3, #11 - brain transplants
« on: June 06, 2006, 09:43:13 AM »
This question really threw me off.  It talks about how the goal of medicine seems to be extend life indefinitely; it then gets into organ transplants, and how the brain can't be transplanted.

I'm sure I'm missing something obvious, but for whatever reason I couldn't wrap my brain around this one.  Can anyone explain why people with degenerative brains disorders will make up an ever-increasing proportion of the population?  (the conclusion of the argument).  And can anyone explain why the correct answer is C?

If anyone can help, thanks!




rtqw

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 1372
  • Jim Tressel drinks wine coolers
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: #34 (June '01) section 3, #11 - brain transplants
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2006, 10:00:51 AM »
If people are surviving their kidney, heart, lung problems, they live longer and potentially develop brain problems. Some people that would otherwise be dead will now be living with an uncurable brain disorder, increasing the percentage of the population with brain disorders.

This assumes that brain disorders are not curable as well. If we could cure brain disorders just like we can cure kidney disorders, the proportion wouldn't rise. If we assume C), there will be people with uncurable brain disorders, because brain transplants are impossible.
University of Michigan Law School, Class of 2010
LSN

Harper

  • Sr. Citizen
  • ****
  • Posts: 225
  • works every time
    • AOL Instant Messenger - harperfan02138
    • Yahoo Instant Messenger - harperfan02138
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: #34 (June '01) section 3, #11 - brain transplants
« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2006, 10:40:37 AM »
If people are surviving their kidney, heart, lung problems, they live longer and potentially develop brain problems. Some people that would otherwise be dead will now be living with an uncurable brain disorder, increasing the percentage of the population with brain disorders.

This assumes that brain disorders are not curable as well. If we could cure brain disorders just like we can cure kidney disorders, the proportion wouldn't rise. If we assume C), there will be people with uncurable brain disorders, because brain transplants are impossible.


Thanks for the explanation!  That makes sense.   

But if so many people are living longer because of these advancements, wouldn't that lead to a significant increase in the population?  In that case, the number of people with the brain disorder would not necessarily exceed the number of people added to the population (and hence, the proportion of brain-disorder people in the pop. wouldn't increase).  It becomes a number v. percentage issue.  Or is it simply another assumption of the argument that it would? 

Aaaargh.  I guess I should just accept that, as in many stimuli, the argument is faulty in a lot of different ways.