The evolving doctrine of informed consent in medical malpractice lawsuits: A reason for concern for neonatologists

Abstract. The doctrine of informed consent is becoming an increasingly important ethical and medico-legal issue and has significantly evolved over the past few decades. This doctrine is especially challenging in neonatal care because of the complexities of the physician-parent relationship and the uncertainty of therapeutic intervention and outcome. This commentary discusses two very important legal decisions about informed consent, which have received widespread attention in legal and insurance company publications. It discusses the impact of these decisions for neonatal care.

*Corresponding Author: 

Dr. Gary N. McAbee, Department of Neuroscience, NJ Neuroscience Institute, 65 James Street, Edison, NJ 08818, USA. Tel.: +1 732 321 7000; Fax: +1 732 744 5821; E-mail: