The ethical discussion about biomedical improvements in humans

Ethics in the Life Sciences – DRZE Expert Reports, Volume 1
Michael Fuchs / Dirk Lanzerath / Ingo Hillebrand / Thomas Runkel / Magdalena Balcerak / Barbara Schmitz

The idea of transcending natural boundaries, of overcoming the parameters of one's own nature and becoming more and more perfect, is as old as humanity itself. The development of medicine and life sciences has led to an increasing availability of biomedical techniques and methods for this purpose.

Corrective interventions in human nature that are not used to cure a disease or are medically indicated in another form, but are aimed to provide improvements, are referred to as ‘enhancements’ in medico-ethical discourse.

The question of the extent to which such measures that go beyond the treatment and prevention of disease are justifiable is currently being addressed in various fields. Based on selected examples (genetic engineering, growth hormone treatment in pediatrics, use of psychotropic drugs as life-style drugs, cosmetic surgery, doping), this progress report presents the current medico-ethical discussion.

SB 01

ISBN: 3-00-010038-5

Publisher: DRZE, Bonn

Year of publication: 2002

Pages: 132, German

Also available in Japanese.

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