Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Misdiagnosis search

Somebody found my blog by searching for "misdiagnosed deformities resulting in elective abortion".

I'll divide the instances I know of into three catagories, based on what the societal drive to eliminate unsatisfactory fetuses costs the woman in question, ranging from needless distress through the needless death of her baby to the needless loss of her life. Since these losses are cumulative, I'll start with those who just suffer needless distress: those who are pushed to abort for a supposed feal abnormality, who manage to at least escape the more dire fates of their sisters, and who end up with a baby to love after all. This post will deal with women who were urged to abort, but who held firm.

  • Stephanie was told that her unborn baby had multiple abnormalities. One medical staffer actually tried to simply make an abortion appointment on her behalf. She got one false diagnosis after another, one recommendation for abortion after the other. The joy of her pregnancy was turned to stress and anxiety, and all for naught: Her baby was born with a bit of an enlarged head, but everything turned out to be fine.

  • Nancy was told that her baby had severe chromosomal abnormalities, incompatable with life. Her doctor urged her to arrange an abortion, even though she was 26 weeks pregnant. Devastated by the news, Nancy nevertheless did some research and rejected abortion, whereupon her doctor increased the pressure on her. Nancy stood firm, and gave birth to a normal baby.

  • Sandi was told that her baby had a fatal form of dwarfism. When she refused abortion, her obstetrician refused to care for her any longer. The treatment team she ended up with met with her regularly to again try to persuade her to abort. Though her baby was small and born a bit early, she had no major health issues at all and is a healthy little girl.

  • Carolyn was told that her baby had a 99% chance of dying in-utero and was urged to abort. Her daugher is a healty, normal little girl.

  • This article notes many women urged to abort, mostly for false or exaggeratedly grim maternal diagnoses. However, Case #5 is of a woman who was told she was infected with the cytomegalovirus, which could cross the placenta and harm the unborn child. She was urged to abort, and actually went as far as to make an appointment. A physician who was her neighbor learned of her situation and referred her to another doctor, who was able to give her a more realistic assessment of the risk that her baby had been harmed by the virus, and if so, how seriously. She decided to continue the pregnancy, and gave birth to a healthy little boy.

  • Laura was told that her unborn baby had died. She rebuffed the doctor's attempt to "emtpy her uterus", and ended up giving birth to a robust little boy.

  • Annette was urged to abort a baby she was told had severe spina bifada. She refused an abortion and gave birth to a healthy little girl.

  • Here is a collection of stories collected from Usenet groups.

    Christina said...

    Sickening stuff. Especially the one who told his patient her baby was dead, when it wasn't. One wonders about his honesty.

    Those are some amazing mothers, though. :)

    The American Association of Prolife Obstetricians and Gynecologists has a directory of pro-life OB/GYN's, for those who would rather avoid this pressure to abort:

    Anonymous said...

    My mother and I were both pressure to abort. Obviously my mother choose life and so did I. When I think of the reasons my doctor gave me to abort: I had a 50% chance of stroke or aneurism if I continued the pregnancy, the medication I would be required to take could cause birth defects, et cetera et cetera. Deep down I knew that aborting my baby would only make the doctors job easier and reduce the chance of a malpractice suit. I am so blessed to have a healthy 4 year old!
    How many mothers out there have grieved the loss of their baby to abortion due to bad medical practices?

    Christina Dunigan said...

    Christina, I'll turn that into a link for you: Pro Life Physician Search

    This is another reason I want to divide medical practitioners into clear cut "Hippocratic" and "Progressive", so that those who'd rather err on the side of life don't have to face what these women did, and those who would rather err on the side of not letting a "defective" baby slip through can go to doctors like these women had.

    Christina Dunigan said...

    michelle, go to After Abortion, where you'll find a new post about an organization that wants to help women tell their stories.