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Should abortion laws be lowered?

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AB Asks | 18:08 Wed 21st Feb 2007 | Law
6 Answers
The world's most-premature baby is hopefully being allowed home this week. Baby Amillia was born at 22 weeks and she only weighed 10 ounces. There was little hope for her survival initially but her prognosis is now excellent according to doctors. The news about this miracle baby could add fresh thoughts into the abortion debate. Currently a woman can have an abortion when they are 24 weeks pregnant. Do you think in light of these medical advances that have seen baby Amillia survive, the law should be changed and a lower limit on abortion be enforced?


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This is a highly emotive and soul searching subject. Life exists in anything capable of sustaining it. I've often wondered if it would really have mattered if I had been aborted instead of born. It certainly wouldn't have mattered to me - I would never have known anything about anything. Whose purposes are really being served by these scientific advances? If abortion is going to happen then the earlier the better.
Yes the abortion limit should be lowered, with todays teechnology a good percentage of premature babies can survive and subsequently I have heard horror stories of aborted babies being left to die when they could of survived.
Most women know that they are pregnant after and month they should be able to decide what they want soon after this it shouldn't take up to 24 weeks to decide whether you want an abortion or not. I am an (accidental) mother myself so please dont tell me i dont know what it's like!
A friend of mine had to terminate at 21 weeks.
The baby she was carrying was discovered to have a serious abnormality and would not have survived long after birth, if it had survived a full gestation. The doctors gave her no choice.
Some things are not discovered until the 20 week scan.
So, in some cases termination is necessary up to 24 weeks.
It isnt very often that a termination would be offered past 16 weeks (on the NHS) for elective purposes. My cousins preganancy was terminated at 22 weeks as it was found the baby had no brain. Had she carried to term the baby would have died after delivery. That baby lived through medical intervention, I dont think there is any point in lowering the limit. There are few terminations that happen at this stage and although you may think that the limit is 24 weeks, if there is serious risk to the life of the mother or the child a pregnancy can be terminated at any stage.

Hmm... I do wonder about the terminated babies left to die of exposure. How frequent and whether it happens. A late termination normally involves a shot of potassium to the heart to stop it from beating. It is a horrendous thing for women to go through and I doubt any women have a termination at 24 weeks for social reason.
excellent answer goodsoulette.

According to the Office of National Statistics and Department of Health only 137 abortions took place after 24 weeks in 2005 out of a total of 186,000. Of those 89% of abortions were carried out at under 13
weeks gestation.

So obviously the current limit ISN'T being abused.
Thanks Pingping. I am very prochoice and I didnt know those figured before. Its probably a very emotive thing I am about to say but a baby born before 36 weeks, does not have a life, it is medical intervention that keeps these babies alive. What if in, 20 years time, we can create a uterine environment for embryos to develop, for a baby born at 14 weeks to develop. Where does it end?

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