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A Mother Denies Her Son Chemotherapy

A Mother Denies Her Son Chemotherapy

When a child is sick it seems only natural that parents do whatever necessary to make the child better.  This is why the case of Daniel Hauser has raised such heated debate and enraged the public. 

Daniel Hauser is a 13-year-old boy suffering from Hodgkin’s lymphoma.  There is now an arrest warrant out for his mother, Colleen Hauser, because she has refused the life-saving chemotherapy that doctors want to give Daniel.  Daniel’s doctors became alarmed and notified child protection officials when Colleen Hauser failed to return Daniel Hauser to chemotherapy after having just one treatment in January.

A recent article from the Star Tribune reported that Daniel and Colleen Hauser’s whereabouts are unknown, presumably running from the current arrest warrant and public demand that Daniel receive treatment.  The courts have also decided that when found, Daniel will be placed in foster care. 

Daniel’s doctors have testified in recent court hearings saying that his chance of survival with chemotherapy treatment would be between 80 and 95 percent, but without it he would probably die within 5 years.  Colleen Hauser has testified in a previous hearing that using chemotherapy on her son would violate her religion and thinks that the drug is a fatal poison.  She has said that she prefers using vitamins and other natural herbs to treat her son’s cancer.

Judge John Rodenburg has stated that the county proved “a compelling state interest in the life and welfare of Daniel sufficient to override the fundamental constitutional rights of both the parents and Daniel to the free exercise of religion and the due process right of the parents to direct the upbringing of their child.”  The judge also ruled that Daniel should remain in the custody of his parents if they comply with the treatments recommended by doctors.

What do you think of Colleen Hauser’s decision not to give her son chemotherapy for his cancer?

Do you think chemotherapy should be court ordered in this case?

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  • jan866 By jan866
    05.20.09  

    I feel that this mother is very wrong in not recommending treatment to her son -- treatment that will save his life! Vitamins and herbs will not cure cancer. In this case, yes, I feel that chemotherapy should be court ordered. He is not old enough to make a decision such as this for himself.

  • jan866 By jan866
    05.20.09  

    this coming from a mother who has a child who went through treatment twice for leukemia before he was the age of 8. 4 1/2 years of chemotherapy. He is now 13 and cancer free.

  • agaphmou By agaphmou
    05.20.09  

    This mother is nuts,especially since his chances with treament are so good.God bless you and your child jan!

  • am_i_lost By am_i_lost
    05.20.09  

    Since his chances are so high there should be no question. If it were a case of well it may or may not help it would be a different story. This child should be given every chance to live a normal, healthy life.

  • deegaroo By deegaroo
    05.20.09  

    This mother must not be in her right mind. She is probably so overwrought with anxiety that she can't make clear decisions. The child obviously needs a medical advocate.

  • Pepperjune By Pepperjune
    05.21.09  

    I feel that the courts do not have the right to infringe on what a parent feels is right for their child in health care. The child is getting treatment,just not chemo. The child could get chemo and die,the child could get alternative medicine and die. Leave them alone,let them do what they feel is best. Let them enjoy time with their son. Plus, I am sure that the stress that courts and media are putting on this family is not helping the boy's health at all. He needs to be left alone and to be with his family. I know two cancer survivors that never took chemo. Chemo isnt always the answer.

  • quintaj99 By quintaj99
    05.21.09  

    Being someone from the medical field, I understand what this mother is facing. She may be very concerned with her childs quality of life instead of quanity of life. This child is of age that he could voice his wants and wishes and the mother could be abiding by them. We are always so quick to judge, and forget how to understand the cultural and religious decisions that people make when in it comes to medicine.

  • dymindz By dymindz
    05.21.09  

    I think that where this child isn't a child but a teenager who can and should be given the choice as to whether or not he wants the chemotherapy. It is the child that has to go through the trials and tribulations and possible false hope of this treatment it is the child. My son was born deaf and just this year I gave him the choice to have surgery to correct his hearing. I left that decision up to my child because it was not me who had to undergo the procedure and recovery it was my son. We explained to him the chance that it may or may not work he understood and took the surgery to correct his right ear. Now he has asked to wait a few years to do the left ear and I will because it is HIS body and not mine. I will protect my children but also give them the choice where it concerns how he will feel and not by my being glad he had this surgery. Also the teenage boy has patients rights and one of the patients rights is "The right to refuse treatment"

  • crunchberries By crunchberries
    05.21.09  

    What an incredibly slanted article. You make it sound like it's solely been Colleen Hauser's decision to deny treatment for her son, when in truth, it was Daniel's as well. He's been telling people that he doesn't want chemo because he's afraid it will kill him, but the judge involved in his case has been using Daniel's other problems as a reason to dismiss his ability to decide what he wants to do with his own body ("The judge has said the boy, who has trouble reading and writing, has "limited capacity" to understand his illness and the treatment for it." --USA Today). Next time, try to form an opinion on facts, not your own baseless speculation, hm?

  • OneDaisy By OneDaisy
    05.21.09  

    I had read an article (AP) that said that Daniel couldn't read and therefore did not understand what his options were. However, the same article states that he did go to one round of chemo and then decided to stop and seek alternative treatment. I think it's ultimately his choice what to do with his life, and it seems like his choice has been made.

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