Bioethics Blogs

Abortion Wars: Arizona Mandates Unscientific “Truths”

by Craig Klugman, Ph.D.

The Arizona legislature has apparently gone through medical school and graduated. They have passed a new law of the land. A person in Arizona is no longer permitted to buy health insurance on the health exchange if the plan provides coverage for abortion (except for the cases of rape, incest, or when the mother’s life is in danger).

A second provision of the law is what has troubled most people. The law now requires that a physician tell his or her patient that a medically induced abortion can be reversed. When having a medicated abortion, a woman takes mifepristone (RU-486) and several days later, a dose of misprostol. The new law requires women be told that the abortion can be reversed if she has a shot of progesterone after the first pill.

A 2012 study in the Annals of Pharmacotherapy by George Delgado claimed the he reversed abortions in 4 out of 6 women who received progesterone. He also claims that this technique is not commonly known. The article is presented as “a series of cases” rather than as a research study. The article also neglects to mention that if the first drug is taken but not the second, abortion occurs only 40 percent of the time. In Arizona, Dr. Allan Sawyer is a Glendale, AZ OB-GYN who testified that he reversed an abortion using this procedure, once. The reason that this technique is not commonly known, is because there is no technique.

This is not the first time doctors have been forced to lie in the name of stopping abortions.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.