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In An Ectopic Pregnancy, It’s Medical Malpractice Not To Save The Mother’s Life By Removing The Baby

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The author is a family physician who spent eight years in obstetrics.

Georgi Boorman’s article from Sept. 9, “Is Abortion Really Necessary For Treating Ectopic Pregnancies?” is laudable for her willingness to take a hard look at what might otherwise be an unexamined assumption. However, the conclusion she draws is not supported by the evidence, even as presented in her own article. Before responding, it’s important we establish several key points of common ground.

First, abortion is wrong. The fact that we allow children to be slaughtered by the millions for the cause of “choice” is a mark of shame upon our nation and culture. While mothers who are dealing with unexpected pregnancies need our support, the fact that we, as a society, countenance the wholesale murder of children when they are inconvenient is unconscionable.

As a nation, the United States has committed her share of grave sins, but in terms of scale — how exactly does one quantify human suffering? — it would be roughly on the order of slavery (although I pray it won’t last as long as that evil institution did). These and other historical wrongs are not unique to America, of course, but we must be willing to acknowledge and confront our national offenses without sugar-coating them.

Second, medicine is a changing field. As one of my senior residents when I was a still-green, first-year resident, joked, “Truth changes.” The oral polio vaccine was superior to the injection Jonas Salk developed because even though it caused a few cases of polio, it prevented more than it caused — until polio became so rare, the oral vaccine was causing more cases than it prevented. Today, then, all polio vaccines in the United Sates are injected.

Inhaled steroids were considered the best early treatment for chronic lung disease for years. In 2017, however, the internationally respected GOLD guidelines pointed out that, no, the data shows they should be used no earlier than third- or fourth-line.

There is a vigorous debate about the merits of universal screening for prostate cancer with the PSA (prostate specific antigen) test, due to questions about whether it affects rates of prostate cancer deaths (as opposed to more focused testing). In medicine, as in many other fields, the only constant is change.

Third, if it is at all possible to save both pregnant mothers and their children, we should. Nobody who believes in pro-life principles wants to see children die needlessly.

Before we go further, we must also define some terms. An abortion is the term for any time a child dies before delivery. If the child died of natural causes, this is a spontaneous abortion, also known as a miscarriage. (This has led to heartbreaking misunderstandings for mothers who received emergency treatment........

© The Federalist