(RepublicanJournal.org) – A pregnant woman who pleaded to Texas’ Supreme Court for an exemption from its abortion law left her state to obtain the procedure as the justices ruled against her. The woman’s attorney claims the fetus’ condition, trisomy 18, is fatal to the baby. They also allege that complications could potentially affect their client’s future fertility.
Kate Cox, who has two other children, initially went to her state court for an exemption after learning her developing baby had the devastating condition. The court ruled with Cox, but Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton took the issue to the State Supreme Court, asking the justices to block the order. They went ahead with the move, holding the restrictions in place.
Court documents state that Cox felt immediate termination of her pregnancy was necessary because she was experiencing cramping and leaks of an unknown fluid, which prompted her to go to a local emergency room (ER) on multiple occasions. The petition also claims that due to previous Cesarean sections, Cox is at higher risk of complications, including uterine rupture and a “dilation and evacuation” procedure would be the woman’s overall safest option. Paxton argues that the mother’s life hasn’t been at risk during any of these so-called complications, noting that she’d been sent home without being admitted each time she’d visited the ER.
MedlinePlus explains that trisomy 18, also known as Edwards syndrome, is the result of a genetic abnormality. It causes slowed growth in the uterus, often affecting heart and other organ development. Most babies with this condition are either stillborn or die before they reach their first month. The roughly 5% to 10% who survive past their first year typically have profound intellectual disabilities. The pregnancy doesn’t put the mother at any increased risk, which was the deciding factor in this case.
The Supreme Court ruling states that abortions are only permissible in Texas when the mother’s life or physical well-being is at serious risk in the absence of pregnancy termination. Abortion is not legal in the case of inadequate fetal development, devastating as the news might be.
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