Rapid progress in modern medical technology has made it possible to sustain life and/or delay death using 'heroic' treatments. The availability of life-sustaining treatment brings several issues in end-of-life care such as 'dying with dignity' and an radical increase in health care costs. The use of Advance Directives(AD) have been widely heralded by health care providers, gerontologists, and advocacy groups as means of protecting patients' right to accept or refuse life-sustaining treatment in end-of-life care. The use of AD can not only improve patients' autonomy and quality of life but also bring efficiency in distributing health care resources. The proportion of older persons in Korean population has been increasing. Those 65 years of age or over were about 7 percent of the population. Death and dying is not limited to older persons, but it is more prevalent among them. In conjunction with an aging population and the increasing prevalence of death, the issues of death and dying will become crucial in near future in terms of 'dying with dignity', 'autonomy', and 'self-control'. This paper attempts to explode and establish the concept of advance directives (AD) based on literature review. Data sources are computer searches with the MEDLINE database. Due to the lack of prior study on AD for a Korean cases, studies abroad are reviewed. This paper suggests the need for future study on the possibility of the use of AD in Korea.