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A Knotty Point.

- . Attention has lately been directed (remarks an English Paper) to the case of a Dublin house painter, who was remanded last month ;at the southern division Police Court on a charge of causing the death of his wife by refusing to permit the amputation of her, arm. Mary O’Keefe, it seems, was admitted to Mercer’s Hospital on 28th May suffering from severe burns on the arm. The surgeons at, the hospital decided that the only way to save her life

was to amputate her arm. She consented to the operation, but her husband refused to permit it to take place. As the surgeons held that they would be liable to an action if anything happened to the patient aftbr an operation had been performed without her husband’s consent, they refused to operate, and the woman died. The coroner’s jury were of opinion that the woman’s life might have been saved if the operation had been performed. The objection of the husband is attributed to his invincible reluctance to be burdened with a one-armed wife. When the husband has thus a direct and obvious interest in the death of his wife, it can hardly be deemed an undue assertion of woman’s rights to ask that her lord and master shall no longer be able to veto operations necessary to preserve her life.

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A Knotty Point. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 2, Issue 187, 8 November 1880

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