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The Silent Scream Essay

2345 words - 10 pages

Since 1973, when Roe vs. Wade has been established, there have been many heated debates among pro-life and pro-choice groups. With abortion being an option for women, it is important to know whether a fetus can feel pain during an abortion procedure. Various people have considered abortion to be unlawful unless it saved the life of the mother (McBride). The court decided based on the history of abortion laws and considered three reasons for banning abortion. One was “A Victorian social concern to discourage illicit sexual conduct.” This was rejected because of modern gender roles. Secondly, “protect the health of women” was to provide a safe medical environment for the mother and was also ...view middle of the document...

There are many types of abortions. For instance, the Suction Aspiration is an abortion common in the first trimester approximately seven weeks pregnant (Birthmothers). The mother’s cervix is dilated so a hollow plastic tube called a cannula can be inserted into the uterus. This is connected to a vacuum pump and the remains of the fetus is sucked into the tube.
Another type of abortion was a D&X, which is now illegal, also known as a partial-birth abortion. This is obviously performed in steps but in a nutshell the abortionist would grab the child’s legs with forceps. Next, as the baby’s legs were pulled through the birth canal the entire body is delivered except the head. The abortionist then wedges his scissors into the baby’s skull to enlarge it and remove the brains so the skull would collapse. This was easy considering the head could not be delivered, but it had to be crushed with the forceps and then extracted from the birth canal (Downs). This could have been performed from twenty weeks to full term birth.
In addition, another abortion that would be performed would be the Saline Injection abortion. This could be performed after fifteen weeks of pregnancy. A needle would be inserted into the mother’s abdomen with the salt solution so it would reach the child’s amniotic sac. The child is not poisoned; rather the skin of the child would be burned off. The child would not die right away as this usually took over an hour for the child to die (Downs). The mother would then give birth to a deceased child or one that is in the process of dying.
The D&E, Dilation and Evacuation would occur within thirteen to twenty four weeks of pregnancy. The fetus doubles in size between the eleventh and twelfth week of pregnancy (Birthmothers). The procedure begins by inserting laminaria a day or two before the abortion so it would open the cervix to accommodate the fetus. The abortion will then cut and dismember the fetus and then vacuum the child’s remains. Since the head is too big to be suctioned, the abortionist then crushes the skull and extracts it from the mother’s womb.
Chemical type abortions include RU-486 (Mifepristone), also known as the abortion pill. This is usually given within four to seven weeks of last menstrual cycle (Birthmothers). The drug interferes with the hormone called progesterone, which keeps the fetus implanted in the wall of the uterus. The woman is prescribed progesterone and comes back to the clinic to receive another drug called prostaglandin that induces labor. This will expel the dead fetus.
Methotrexate is used for cancer and misoprostol is used for ulcer treatment (Birthmothers). The two combined are considered a chemical abortion. The methotrexate causes cell in the placenta to die, and the misoprostol empties the fetus from the uterus by causing contractions and then makes the fetus push itself out.
At the moment of conception the fetus is starting to develop. The fetus itself is establishing the traits it needs to to...

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