Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Women's Abortion Deaths Only 'a Local Issue,' Says Planned Parenthood

In which yours truly comes out of hibernation to refute Planned Parenthood's outrageous disdain for women's health:

The FDA warns users of the contraceptive patch that they're at an elevated risk of blood clots and strokes. Planned Parenthood VP Dr. Vanessa Cullins counters, "No...[the patch] is one of the safest, most convenient, and most effective methods of reversible contraception available to women today." What she doesn't reveal is that she's on the patch manufacturer's payroll.

Now, the New York Times reports that it's convening a meeting to investigate the deaths of four California women who took abortion drug RU-486, which also goes by the generic name mifepristone and the brand name Mifeprex. The women died of a rare infection. Preliminary investigation shows that abortion pills distributed in that state were not contaminated.

One possibility being considered is that an off-label use of a drug along with Mifeprex may play a role in the deaths:

No similar deaths have been reported in Europe, where Mifeprex is widely used. But in the United States, most physicians give Mifeprex and an accompanying drug, misoprostol, in a regimen that involves inserting misoprostol vaginally.

Federal drug regulators have not approved this regimen, but it is not unusual for doctors to use drugs differently from how they are officially approved. Studies indicate that this regimen is effective, requires a lower dose of misoprostol, and allows women to undergo the most emotional and painful part of the procedure at home. What is unknown is whether it may somehow contribute to bacterial infections.
Naturally, Planned Parenthood, with its much-advertised concern for women's health, welcomes this probe—in its fashion:
Dr. Scott J. Spear, chairman of the national medical committee of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the nation's largest provider of abortions, said there was no evidence that the vaginal administration of misoprostol increased the risks of bacterial infections.

"They're all in California, so is this a local issue?" Dr. Spear said. "I think it's dangerous to speculate in the absence of good data."
This begs the question: What would constitute "good data" to Planned Parenthood?

Margaret Sanger's organization advocates misoprostol use with Mifeprex—even though this is not approved by the FDA. It also advocates the use of Mifeprex into the 63rd day of pregnancy—even though the FDA only allows it to be used through the 49th day of pregnancy.

With typical supercillious disdain for those federal Neanderthals whom American voters charge to protect citizens' health, Planned Parenthood brazenly comes up with its own "data" to back off-label Mifeprex use:
A large majority of clinicians exercise their legal right to adapt the approved protocol based on scientific evidence. Ways in which the mifepristone regimen is often adapted include
reducing the dosage. It has been found that using one-third the standard dose (200 mg) is equally effective as using a full dose.

eliminating the second visit. Studies have found it is safe and effective to allow women to self administer the prostaglandin at home.

extending the time period for using mifepristone. Studies have found that mifepristone can be effective up to 63 days after the first day of the last menstrual period. (Boonstra, 2002).
Mifeprex-and-misoprostol victim Holly Patterson died after being given just such a "reduced dose" of Mifeprex by Planned Parenthood, enabling her to forgo the second office visit that could have saved her life.

On the same Web page, Planned Parenthood openly advocates the off-label use of misoprostol which is now the target of governmental investigation. I don't know what brilliant "data" they use to justify this, but it ain't the manufacturer's own package label for Cytotec, the brand name for misoprostol, which is sold to treat ulcers. It states:
Do not take Cytotec to reduce the risk of NSAID induced ulcers if you are pregnant. Cytotec can cause abortion (sometimes incomplete which could lead to dangerous bleeding and require hospitalization and surgery), premature birth, or birth defects. It is also important to avoid pregnancy while taking this medication and for at least one month or through one menstrual cycle after you stop taking it. Cytotec has been reported to cause the uterus to rupture (tear) when given after the eighth week of pregnancy. Rupture (tearing) of the uterus can result in severe bleeding, hysterectomy, and/or maternal or fetal death.
Let me get this straight. On top of the possibility of dangerous bleeding requiring hospitalization and surgery and all the other complications—and leaving aside Planned Parenthood's desired complication of abortion,

"Cytotec has been reported to cause the uterus to rupture (tear) when given after the eighth week of pregnancy. Rupture (tearing) of the uterus can result in severe bleeding, hysterectomy, and/or maternal or fetal death."

As mentioned before, how many weeks into a pregnancy does Planned Parenthood claim its "data" says misoprostol/Cytotec "can be effective"?

Nine ("63 days").

I suppose that extra week doesn't really matter to Planned Parenthood if it can increase its profits. The so-called nonprofit received a quarter-billiion dollars of taxpayer funds and made a $35 million profit last year.

So, four women's deaths from an abortion drug illegitimately prescribed is merely "a local issue."

Come to think of it, given Planned Parenthood's penchant for avoiding the word "fetus," the organization's executive may have been misquoted. He probably meant to say, "Is this a local tissue?"

Please read the Harris Protocol before commenting. Violators will be deleted and banned without any explanation while I do my best Vincent Price maniacal laugh. Just kidding on that last part—thanks in advance for your polite, on-topic comments, and happy Thanksgiving.