Anonymous essay says sometimes 'choice' is a lie
An anonymous essay published in Annals of Internal Medicine says that sometimes choice is just a lie. The author vividly describes caring for a pregnant woman who would be forced to carry a baby to term that would soon be born without a skull or brain. While the baby's condition was certainly fatal, state laws prohibited caregivers from ending the pregnancy.
According to the author, this case shows how extreme politics can warp patient care. The baby's diagnosis was not ambiguous. It would be born without a brain and would not survive. But because of strict anti-abortion laws in the author's state, all they could do was watch the patient leave OB triage, both pregnant and grieving, only to return to the hospital a few days later to give birth prematurely to the doomed infant.
Physicians are used to doing everything they can to save a child because that's what is expected. But, according to the author, sometimes all they can do is provide compassion.