Journal of Medical Ethics and History of Medicine 2016. 9(1):.

Conceptualization of Idle (Laghw) and its Relation to Medical Futility
Mohsen Rezaei Adaryani, Mohsen Javadi, Saeid Nazari Tavakkoli, Mehrzad Kiani, Mahmood Abbasi


A major debate in medical ethics is the request for futile treatment. The topic of medical futility requires discrete assessment in Iran for at least two reasons. First, the common principles and foundations of medical ethics have taken shape in the context of Western culture and secularism. Accordingly, the implementation of the same guidelines and codes of medical ethics as Western societies in Muslim communities does not seem rational. Second, the challenges arising in health service settings are divergent across different countries.

The Quranic concept of idle (laghw) and its derivatives are used in 11 honorable verses of the Holy Quran. Among these verses, the 3rd verse of the blessed Al-Muminūn Surah was selected for its closer connection to the concept under examination. The selected verse was researched in the context of all dictionaries presented in Noor Jami` al-Tafasir 2 (The Noor Collection of Interpretations 2) software.

"Idle" is known as any insignificant speech, act, or thing that is not beneficial; an action from which no benefit is gained; any falsehood (that is not stable or realized); an entertaining act; any foul, futile talk and action unworthy of attention; loss of hope; and something that is not derived from method and thought. The word has also been used to refer to anything insignificant. The notes and derived interpretations were placed in the following categories: A) Having no significant benefit (When medical care does not benefit the patient (his body and/or soul and his life in this world and/or the Hereafter), it is wrong to proceed with that medical modality; B) Falsehood (Actions that fail to provide, maintain, and improve health are clearly futile); C) Unworthy of attention (An action that neither improves health nor threatens it is wrong and impermissible).


Holy Quran, Quran-related dictionary, idle, Laghw, medical futility

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