A paper described a problem of two women who wanted their fetuses to be tested for a genetic condition, but where in both cases their partners had refused to give consent. Should the journal publish such a paper without obtaining consent from the partners? The editors think not, but the authors are unconvinced.
_ It would be impossible to completely anonymise the case even if mention was not made of the genetic condition. _ One solution might be for the case to be published in the form of a discussion and alluded to in an abstract sense, although the authors had indicated that they would prefer to leave the case reports in. _ Public interest can override confidentiality.
The journal published the article on the general subject, but with no information on the particular cases. The authors eventually agreed that it would be wrong to publish the case reports without consent from the partners.