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Religion & ectopic abortion

Spirituality   (4,611 Views 73 Comments)
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Hello nursing community!

I have a question for you all. How do you feel about methotrexate or other drug-based treatment for the termination of ectopic pregnancy? As someone who was raised with very loose christian beliefs and spent some of my young adult years in the Catholic Church, I'm really intrigued to see how much focus there really is on this topic in the medical community. I work in an OBGYN hospital on the triage floor, and many times have had methotrexate used to terminate ectopic pregnancy in non emergent situations. I have seen patients take this in different ways, varying from complete emotional breakdown to sigh of relief. I see this method as one of the safest ways to handle the situation and find the noninvasive nature of it very appealing, but according to the bylaws of the Catholic Church it is still abortion and an excommunicable offense. I am not certain of how other denominations of christianity or other religions view it, and would be curious to learn.

On that note, a couple of questions for you:

How do you feel about termination of an ectopic pregnancy by pharmaceutical means?

What religious background are you speaking from?

How does your denomination/church/religion view this? Are your views in line with theirs, or do you find yourself on the outskirts like me?

And to better understand your viewpoint, do you identify yourself as pro-life, pro-choice, or undecided?

Just so you don't think I am skipping out on the tough one: I am pro-choice (politically speaking) because I believe every woman has a right to make her own choice until the point of fetal viability. Morally speaking, I know that I could not choose to terminate a viable pregnancy under normal circumstances, because I do not believe it is right.

I know this can be a touchy subject for some, therefor I'm asking you to be kind. Please take care when choosing your words, and be kind to others. Everyone with personal connections to this topic will appreciate your gentle approach.

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I am a pro-life Catholic, but it is my feeling that termination of an ectopic pregnancy is a necessary evil that must be done to save the life of the mother. The baby cannot be saved in that situation. I don't support abortion under any other circumstances.

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First off, I want to make it very clear that I am 110% pro choice and very much so a liberal feminist. I am a Southern Baptist and this is not at all what my church teaches. My church holds strong that abortion is a sin. However, the way that I see it, most churches (including mine) still say that being gay is a sin, so obviously they're not right about everything.

With that being said, directly answering the rest of your questions:

I feel that especially in an ectopic pregnancy, which can cause real harm to the mother and is not viable anyway, any safe means of termination is and should be perfectly okay. I see no problems in using a medication to terminate an ectopic pregnancy.

Beyond just what my church thinks, living in the south, I feel like such an outsider with many of my beliefs. But I always just chalk it up to an ignorance to how other people live.

Of course, I am pro choice. I almost feel like I am in a unique position to have this viewpoint because my parents were very young (16 and 17 I believe) when they had me and they literally went to an abortion clinic but changed their minds at the last minute. Knowing this, I still am pro choice. I believe that every woman has the right to have control over her own body. Beyond that, making abortions illegal or more inaccessible wouldn't stop abortions, it would just raise the number of illegal and unsafe abortions in this country. And not to mention the number of children in the foster care system and children born to unfit parents.

But that's just my two cents

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I am not sure that the Church is against this, after all, it would be suicide to continue the pregnancy.

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I think you may be a bit confused about what an ectopic pregnancy is. A pregnancy growing outside the uterus will NEVER become a healthy, viable pregnancy. The only options for treating it are methotrexate, surgical removal, or maternal death. The term "abortion" should not even be thrown around here---it's essentially the only TREATMENT for the situation. I know of no teaching from the Catholic church that supports allowing moms to die instead of treating an ectopic. However, I'm not Catholic so I could be wrong, but I doubt it.

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This is pretty cut and dry to me. The baby is simply not viable. The mother is viable. The two options are to terminate the baby or terminate both persons. I don't see how any religious beliefs could even logically go against ectopic pregnancy termination.

ETA: Atheist, pro-life

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I am a pro-life, STRONGLY pro-choice Catholic. You read that right. I personally don't want to have abortions. I also believe it would be wrong to remove the safe, legal right to obtain them. My personal feelings on the matter should not weigh in at all.

Terminating an ectopic pregnancy is medical treatment for a grave health circumstance. I do not see any kind of moral conflict, not only in this situation but in any situation in which a woman is facing hard choices about pregnancy. Its between herself and whatever God she does or doesn't believe in. Stay out of other people's wombs, thank you very much. In the case of an ectopic pregnancy, to me it would be morally wrong to even imply that there is a moral component to healing the woman and saving her life.

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The situation you describe is not an abortion and I do not believe it is in conflict with any religion, except maybe those that believe any kind of medical intervention for anything is wrong and one should only rely on prayer for resolution.

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I think you may be a bit confused about what an ectopic pregnancy is. A pregnancy growing outside the uterus will NEVER become a healthy, viable pregnancy. The only options for treating it are methotrexate, surgical removal, or maternal death. The term "abortion" should not even be thrown around here---it's essentially the only TREATMENT for the situation. I know of no teaching from the Catholic church that supports allowing moms to die instead of treating an ectopic. However, I'm not Catholic so I could be wrong, but I doubt it.

You took the words out of my mouth! I am a pro-life christian. I do not feel like abortion should be used as a form of birth control, as the majority of them are. Even in the instance of rape, I would not have an abortion, but also understand that there are women who could not carry a baby conceived in this manner.

My first pregnancy was ectopic, there was NOTHING that I or the doctors could do to save my pregnancy, I ultimate had to have emergency surgery to stop the bleeding. In no way do I feel as though I made the decision to kill my child and abort it, my body was already in the process of doing that.

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I have a question for you all. How do you feel about methotrexate or other drug-based treatment for the termination of ectopic pregnancy?

It's the least invasive method to terminate a pregnancy that is in no way viable. I don't see how anyone could be against it.

As someone who was raised with very loose christian beliefs and spent some of my young adult years in the Catholic Church, I'm really intrigued to see how much focus there really is on this topic in the medical community. I work in an OBGYN hospital on the triage floor, and many times have had methotrexate used to terminate ectopic pregnancy in non emergent situations. I have seen patients take this in different ways, varying from complete emotional breakdown to sigh of relief. I see this method as one of the safest ways to handle the situation and find the noninvasive nature of it very appealing, but according to the bylaws of the Catholic Church it is still abortion and an excommunicable offense. I am not certain of how other denominations of christianity or other religions view it, and would be curious to learn.

The Catholic Church should stick to churching and leave medicine/surgery to those who are professionally trained. An ectopic pregnancy is not viable.

On that note, a couple of questions for you:

How do you feel about termination of an ectopic pregnancy by pharmaceutical means?

See answer to question 1 above. I also support the use of mifepristone + misoprostol for women who are up to 7 weeks pregnant who elect to terminate their pregnancy.

What religious background are you speaking from?

Atheist

How does your denomination/church/religion view this? Are your views in line with theirs, or do you find yourself on the outskirts like me?

I don't have a religion. I was raised Catholic and left the church as soon as I was 18 because of their views on things like women's rights and gay rights.

And to better understand your viewpoint, do you identify yourself as pro-life, pro-choice, or undecided?

Pro-choice.

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Treating an ectopic pregnancy is not an abortion. There is no way to save the baby, as the embryo is implanted outside the uterus and will not survive. It is extremely dangerous to the mother and can result in emergency surgery or even death in some cases. I work at a Catholic hospital and we have done surgeries for ectopic pregnancies. I'm very strongly pro-life and a Christian.

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I am a pro-life Catholic, but it is my feeling that termination of an ectopic pregnancy is a necessary evil that must be done to save the life of the mother. The baby cannot be saved in that situation. I don't support abortion under any other circumstances.

exactly the same

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