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More IVF Moms Aborting Multiple Babies, Critcs Outraged

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By Benge Nsenduluka, CP Reporter
December 29, 2011|9:55 am

A growing number of in vitro fertilized moms terminate over 100 babies each year out of the fear of having multiple children.

In the U.K., more than 100 babies were aborted in 2010 by IVF women pregnant with more than one child, such as twins or triplets, according to The Telegraph. Data from the Department of Health in the UK shows selective abortions have significantly increased since 2006.

In 2006, 59 women were recorded as terminating at least one unborn baby and this figure jumped to more than 85 during 2010.

It has become common for these women who become pregnant with multiple babies to undergo abortion surgeries, while proceeding to deliver at least one of her unborn babies.

Critics say the reason behind the rise in selective abortions among IVF mothers is that many women fear that having more than one child will be overwhelming and in some instances, unmanageable.

Others in favor argue that IVF moms who become pregnant with multiple babies are more likely to face health complications, and are therefore opting to have abortions to protect both the mother and her child.

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It is believed that under U.K. law, a pregnant woman can undergo abortion surgery up to the point of birth on medical grounds, according to The Telegraph.

Professor Richard Fleming, scientific director at the Glasgow Centre for Reproductive Medicine, explained why he feels the increase in IVF related abortions is a positive thing.

"The more complicated multiple pregnancies lie almost exclusively in the IVF domain. It’s a horrible decision to make but a very sensible one," Fleming told The Telegraph.

Some critics against abortion were not so accepting, arguing that although IVF babies face higher risks of being born with birth defects, they still deserve a chance to live.

“If prospective parents are not willing to have twins then they should not be implanting more than one embryo at a time. Parental preference should never take precedence over the right to life of the unborn child," vented chief executive of the Christian Medical Fellowship, Dr. Peter Saunders.

Research from the U.K. health center revealed that post-IVF abortions are also a controversial issue in the U.K.

"Over 80 British women are having terminations every year following successful fertility treatment," healthcentre.org.uk wrote on its website.

Although most IVF women undergo fertility treatments to gain assistance conceiving, a number of women undergo abortion surgery after achieving their original goal of getting pregnant.

Reasons for the sudden change of heart include pregnancy anxiety and divorce.

Selective IVF abortions are not only prevalent in the U.K., and they have now become a global issue.

Earlier this year, an Australian IVF couple who already has three sons was scrutinized after terminating their unborn twin boys in pursuit of conceiving a baby girl. According to Mail Online, one critic, Dr. Bob Phelps, criticized the couple, who reportedly miscarried their only daughter prior to conceiving twin boys through IVF.

"In the interests of society as a whole, they should seek some counseling for their grief and look for another way of getting a daughter into their family," Phelps said.

 

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