Sunday, October 16, 2011

Two abortions, half a century apart

On October 2, 1923, 16-year-old Lauretta Schranz underwent a criminal abortion somewhere in Chicago. On October 16, Lauretta died at Chicago Hospital from complications of that abortion. Ethel Davis and Lena Rumenstein were held by the coroner in Lauretta's death. Their professions were not listed on my source document. Davis was indicted by a grand jury for felony murder on November 15.

Keep in mind that things that things we take for granted, like antibiotics and blood banks, were still in the future. For more about abortion in this era, see Abortion in the 1920s.
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Fast forward to 1974, when abortion is safe and legal and women need fear quackery no more.

Maria Lira, a 19-year-old college student, went to Riveria Hospital on October 14, 1974, to undergo an abortion. After she'd been discharged, Maria had problems and returned. Staff performed a D&C, then discharged her again. That night, she went to the emergency room due to excessive bleeding, and was sent to Torrance Memorial Hospital for treatment, where she died on October 16. The autopsy found a decomposing fetus in her uterus, which had caused infection and DIC (disseminated intravacsular coagulopathy), a clotting disorder which allowed Maria to bleed to death.

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