In this work of nonfiction, Rebecca Skloot writes about the life of a woman that unknowingly supplied her cells to scientific research. Additionally, Skloot expresses issues such as race, scientific methods, class, and ethics, that were raised by the HeLa cells. The novel commences with a quote by Elie Wiesel from The Nazi Doctors and the Nuremberg code. The quote follows “ We must not see any person as an abstraction. Instead, we must see in every person a universe with its own secrets, with its own treasures, with its own sources of anguish and with some measure of triumph”. By judging the content of the quote, it is obvious that it serves as an indirect summary of contents the book contains-- the life of Henrietta, her adversities, triumphs,
First of all, Henrietta was never told that many scientists were undergoing experiments on her because of her unusual cells, this was kept a secret to prevent her from ever refusing the experiments. While going through a cancer procedure a doctor Telinde who was working on her never mentioned anything about getting samples, “no one had told Henrietta that Telinde was
The final violation of ethical principles, in the story of Henrietta Lacks, was the violation of justice. Without the contribution of Henrietta’s cells, many discoveries and vaccines, such as the vaccine that conquered Polio, would not have made their pivotal breakthroughs in biomedical research. Her direct and unknowingly, supportive contribution helped save many people’s lives all over the world. Unfortunately, her named did not receive the recognition it deserved, and her family never received any compensation for profits made from direct use of her
It is better to try research and figure out something, and solve a problem, Rather than never try something and never find out if it works. In “Flowers for Algernon” and Awakenings, it Shows that it is ethical for doctors and other medical professionals to perform experimental surgery. The movie and the book also show that a chance of fixing a problem can give people a second chance in life even though it may be short. Those two It is worth it. The book and the move also show how a second chance may affect the person and everyone around them. It is ethical
Henrietta Lacks was an African-American woman whose cells from her cancerous tumor led to many medical advances in the world. The cells led to the HeLa line, which have a crucial role in drug development and toxicity testing (Hunt). Prior to the HeLa line, it was proven impossible to grow human cells in a laboratory for any length of time. The conflict in this amazing discovery is that her cells were taken from her body for medical purposes without her permission. People argue that people have to be given legal ownership of their tissues and given money for them or medical advances made using the tissues. The Supreme Court ruled that people cannot be given money for the use of their tissues, because it would dissuade researchers from using
Henrietta Lack was an African American woman born in 1920 who helped science define some of the world’s medical discoveries. Many woman were dying every year from cervical cancer. Little did she know what the future held for her and millions of other people. This situation saddens me as a medical professional because a human was treated as a specimen rather than a person. Even though this was many decades ago, I feel as though there still should have been standard practices in place that prevented this kind of behavior from those who are supposed to be trusted most, health care professionals. The article we had to read in a previous assignment is a wonderful account of Henrietta Lacks life and the impact she made on the world today. It
She had lacked access to healthcare for most of her life because of her race, and so when she was diagnosed with cancer she ended up at Johns Hopkins Hospital, because it was one of the few hospitals on the east coast that allowed the treatment of African Americans. It was on her death bed in John Hopkins, that some cells were taken from her without her permission, which was not ethical. It was those cells that were immortalized in a culture and are now called HeLa cells. HeLa cells, while not ethically sourced have been an amazing cell culture. They have been used to develop the polio vaccine and invitro fertilization, and the cells are still being used for drug development today. The main ethical problems are that the cells were taken without Henrietta’s permission, and that her family never received reimbursement for Henrietta’s contribution to
Millions of people have these cells to thank for their health and researchers owe their life’s work to them. Yet, the Lacks family cannot even afford to go to the doctor and are completely unaware of everything their mother’s cells have done for the wellbeing of people all around the world. Gey would not even publish or release her real name. In chapter 22, the reader sees the family’s reaction to being kept in the dark about these cell, Bobbette says, “Everybody always saying Henrietta Lacks donated those cells. She didn’t donate nothing. They took them and didn’t ask.” This quote ties together much of the story behind the ethical issues surrounding these cells and the importance of informed consent, a privilege we now take for granted
Does saving the human race from extinction matter if you did not get permission to take the materials necessary? When an African American women had her cells stolen without her consent she had no knowledge as to how she was going to benefit the world, let alone the science industry. This woman is Henrietta Lacks. Her cells and her legacy will never be forgotten throughout the world. In The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Rebecca Skloot presents the scientific progression of HeLa cells with study cases, such as the study of viruses and the development of the polio vaccine, in order to prove to the reader that HeLa was beneficial towards science and was not illegal in any ethical way.
Born in Roanoke, Virginia on August 1, 1920, Henrietta Lacks would one day unknowingly be the reason for one of the most important cell lines in medical research. Henrietta Lacks became the source of HeLa cells after her death on October 4, 1951 (aged 31), cells which were the first immortalized cell line in history; immortalized cells are cells that will reproduce indefinitely under specific conditions. While Henrietta’s cells were and continue to be used to treat many illnesses, there was never any consent given from Henrietta herself, or any of her family. To this day, no portion of the billions of dollars made from HeLa cells ever found it’s way to Henrietta’s family. The medical ethics in the 1950’s are very questionable in comparison
Henrietta Lacks was treated in a hospital as another data point to be mapped. According to Kant, morally good people should never treat someone as a means to an end. In Chapter 3, Skloot states that Henrietta did sign a waiver form that allowed the physician to perform any necessary procedure, but it never stated her agreeance to Johns Hopkins taking a sample of her cervical tissue or that she would be informed of any procedures. In fact, no one ever told Henrietta that TeLinde was collecting samples. The samples were taken for Gey and his research purpose of growing immortal human cells. After HeLa cells became widespread, industries like Microbiological Associates in Chapter 13 commercialized the production of HeLa and sold HeLa cells in the millions to scientists all over the world. However, no one at Microbiological Associates bothered to ask where HeLa cells are from and why none of the profits go anywhere else. Henrietta’s cells were used as a means to earn money for the company and a means for George Gey to be famous. Even her healthcare physician Dr. TeLinde used Henrietta as a means for expanding on his cervical cancer procedure of using radium. As Henrietta and her visit to Johns Hopkins was essentially her being used as a stepping stone for another person’s career, she was treated as a means to an end. Taking her cells without her permission, selling them without her or her family knowing, and her treatment overall is not morally good nor
When Henrietta’s cells were taken she didn’t know about it. Two samples were taken. One of her diseased cervix and another of her not diseased cervix. When Henrietta died, her cells were a very big profit for the John Hopkins Hospital, but Henrietta’s grave wasn’t even labelled, and her family gained no profit from the HeLa cells. I think that’s very unethical. Henrietta’s family didn’t even know that HeLa cells were being sold all over the world until some years after they were taken. In 2010 Henrietta’s grave was labelled.
1. Please outline the history of Henrietta Lacks 's tissue cells. Who did what with the cells, when, where and for what purpose? Who benefited, scientifically, medically, and monetarily?
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks is a biography, which describes the life of a woman whose cells reproduced even after her death. Rebecca Skloot the author of the book goes on a search to discover who Henrietta Lacks was and why no one knew the owner of the cells that saved countless lives for decades. Despite Rebecca Skloot finding Henrietta’s family and learning about their lives and history of their mother, the family was never aware of 〖HeLa〗^1 and what scientists were using her cells for until twenty years later. The information about HeLa cells brought great shock and distress to the family, which unfortunately was never completely resolved till this day. In the end of the book (Afterward), the author explains
There are many ethical issues facing health care at any time and it is impossible to say definitively which is the most pressing or the most important. Health care professionals are expected to base their practice on a set of ethical principles, including truthfulness, beneficence, nonmaleficence, justice, and confidentiality. Ethical issues can arise, however, when a l professional is called upon to act in opposition to personal values or in cases where the values of patient, health care worker, and sponsoring institution conflict. The following issues are presented in no order.