SC rejected her plea to abort; now woman bears defective baby

SC rejected her plea to abort; now woman bears defective baby

SC rejected her plea to abort; now woman bears defective baby

A woman whose plea to abort a 27-week-old foetus was denied by the Supreme Court in March has given birth to an infant with severe brain and spinal deformities.

The baby, born last week, is currently battling for its life at the neo natal care unit of Mumbai’s King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital.

The deformity is called Arnold Chiari Type II syndrome, which is caused by structural deformities in brain and spinal cord during foetal formation.

Despite earlier reports that the parents refused to take possession of the baby, they agreed to take it home. “The infant is currently being treated here,” KEM Hospital dean Dr Avinash Supe told DH on Wednesday, confirming that the family is ready to take possession of the baby.

The mother had approached the Supreme Court with a plea to abort the 27-week-old foetus, which the apex court had turned down on March 27.

Dr Nikhil Datar, a senior gynaecologist from Cloud Nine Hospital who had dealt with the issue, said the government must amend the time given to abort the foetus in the event of severe abnormalities.

“(Abortion) is currently permissible within 20 weeks. If we see globally, it is 24th week, 26th week or 28th week,” he said, asking the government to amend the rules.

He said the current rules force women to carry the defective baby to term against their wishes if the abnormality is detected after the 20th week.

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