Why has ‘heartbeat’ just become a ‘medically inaccurate’ term? Abortion.

You’d think it was some sort of new scientific discovery, the way the abortion-friendly media and its so-called “reproductive health experts” are all of a sudden incessantly insisting that the term “heartbeat,” when used to refer to the cardiac activity of the human embryo in utero, is unscientific and medically inaccurate. This is the purposeful dehumanization of human beings, done for one reason alone: abortion. The vast majority of the so-called “experts” quoted of late by the media on this issue are actually abortionists (no possible conflict of interest… nothing to see here… move along) who have already dehumanized preborn humans to the point that they actively and purposefully end their lives for money.

When Americans learn about fetal development, support for abortion dwindles

The abortion industry knows that when the ugly truth about abortion gets out, Americans become more opposed to it. In fact, a recent poll showed that most Americans support the “heartbeat bills” protecting preborn children starting at six weeks. In addition, Rasmussen polling shows that learning facts about fetal development — such as when the heartbeat begins — impacts Americans’ ideas on when they would restrict abortion.

“When told that a fetal heartbeat can be detected as early as six weeks into a pregnancy, 56% of voters favor a proposal that would make abortion illegal at any point after such a heartbeat has been detected,” pollster Scott Rasmussen noted, adding that “there is a bit less support when the question is asked without the information about how early the heartbeat can begin.”


So… if abortion advocates can get Americans to believe that embryos at six weeks don’t really have “heartbeats,” then that little problem about the majority wanting to ban abortion after the heartbeat begins disappears (theoretically). Shape and weaponize the language, and you can dehumanize anyone.

ACOG says “heartbeat” isn’t medically accurate… so why did they refer to it as a “heartbeat” in 2018?

According to a report in The Guardian, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists — an abortion-supportive organization representing 58,000 physicians in the US — has come forward to claim that those using the term “heartbeat” are just being completely unscientific. “Arbitrary gestational age bans on abortion at six weeks that use the term ‘heartbeat’ to define the gestational development being targeted do not reflect medical accuracy or clinical understanding,” ACOG president Dr Ted Anderson, said.

He went on to claim, “What is interpreted as a heartbeat in these bills is actually electrically induced flickering of a portion of the fetal tissue that will become the heart as the embryo develops. Thus, ACOG does not use the term ‘heartbeat’ to describe these legislative bans on abortion because it is misleading language, out of step with the anatomical and clinical realities of that stage of pregnancy.” Oh, really? Then why has the ACOG been using this alleged “misleading language” in its documentation about pregnancy and fetal development up until this point?

In this online document on pregnancy and fetal development from just last year, 2018, ACOG refers to the heartbeat as (drum roll, please)… a “heartbeat.” (See the entire fetal development PDF from ACOG here.)

ACOG document on fetal development refers to six week “heartbeat” (HT: Carole Novielli)

The document says that within the first eight weeks of pregnancy:

  • Placenta begins to form.
  • The brain and spinal cord begin to form.
  • The tissues that will form the heart begin to beat. The heartbeat can be detected with ultrasound at about 6 weeks of pregnancy.
  • Buds for limbs appear with paddle-like hands and feet.
  • The eyes, ears, and nose begin to develop. Eyelids form, but remain closed.
  • The genitals begin to develop.
  • By the end of the eighth week, all major organs and body systems have begun to develop.

An older version of this same document used the term “baby” instead of “fetus.” This was changed in 2017, just two years after the “baby” patient handout’s release. There were no other wording changes made. Why? Abortion! Dr. Greg Marchand, board certified OBGYN, said of the change, “There’s some really big political implications here. We are talking about the difference between telling a newly pregnant mom that she is pregnant with a baby or pregnant with a fetus. This is early in pregnancy, when pregnancy termination is still something many new moms are considering.”

HT: Carole Novielli

In the ACOG’s book, “Your Pregnancy and Childbirth Month to Month, Sixth Edition,” published in 2015, the ACOG says that for Week 6 of pregnancy, “Your baby’s heart is beating approximately 105 times per minute, and it is possible to see and hear the heart beating if you have an ultrasound exam.” It then goes on to further describe the developing child as having a forming nose, mouth and ears, “and webbed fingers and toes are poking out from your baby’s hands and feet. The inner ear begins to develop.” (Photos below.)

This is a far cry from ACOG’s president Anderson’s description as “electrically induced flickering of a portion of the fetal tissue that will become the heart.” Really? “Fetal tissue” has webbed fingers and toes and hands and feet and inner ears? To me, that doesn’t sound at all like mere “tissue.” Someone’s being deceptive here, for sure, but it isn’t pro-life individuals.

ACOG’s month-to-month pregnancy and childbirth book cover (HT: Carole Novielli)

ACOG 2015 Pregnancy and Childbirth book, Week 6 description of the “baby’s heart beating.” (HT: Carole Novielli)

It seems that when a baby is wanted, that “embryonic pulsing” — as the New York Times has just ridiculously described it — is called a “heartbeat.” When the baby isn’t wanted, all dehumanizing language meant to obscure biological reality is allowed.

On Facebook, Secular Pro-Life pointed out the absurdity of ACOG’s language regarding the preborn child’s heartbeat, noting, “Remember just in the last week or so WaPo slammed ACOG for peddling the lie that before Roe v. Wade thousands of women every year died from unsafe abortion. This group is presented as scientific and nonpartisan. They’re anything but.”

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