The pro-abortion media has been attacking the abortion pill reversal process — which has saved hundred of preborn children’s lives — for the past ten years. In 2007, Dr. Matthew Harrison saved the first preborn baby from a medication abortion, and in 2012, Dr. George Delgado and Dr. Mary Davenport published “Progesterone Use to Reverse the Effects of Mifepristone” in the Annals of Pharmacotherapy, reporting a 66 percent survival rate in their first seven patients. The Abortion Pill Reversal hotline was then put into place by Dr. Delgado, and staffed 24/7 with nurses and medical professionals. A network of more than 300 physicians around the world now participates to help desperate women who regret beginning the process of having a medication abortion.
But a technical error has given the media new ammunition, and numerous outlets — like Slate, Buzzfeed, and Jezebel — have opened fire. But none were perhaps as egregious and inflammatory as Newsweek. “Study claiming abortions are ‘reversible’ retracted, not based in science,” the headline blares. The study in question was originally published in the April issue of the journal “Issues in Law and Medicine,” showing that almost half of women who received a high dose of the progesterone were able to save their babies’ lives. But Newsweek claimed that the study was withdrawn for ethical reasons, and pointed out that the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) had condemned the research before the study was even printed.
One of the study’s authors, Dr. George Delgado, told Live Action News that Newsweek’s article was “inaccurate and misleading,” explaining that, far from being a problem of medical ethics, the study was retracted for a mere technical error.
“There was a technical error that resulted in the study being withdrawn at the request of the University of San Diego which gave the institutional review board (IRB) review approval,” Dr. Delgado said. “The error was that, due to an oversight, the data set we analyzed in the study included patients who were treated outside of the time period reported to the IRB.”
This error does not mean that the study will not be re-published. “We will have the study reviewed again to obtain IRB approval. Then we will republish the article,” he said. “Then we move forward as we have been doing.”
Dr. Delgado noted that the ACOG, which attacked the study, “is extremely biased and pro-abortion” and “in no way can it and its leaders be considered to be objective.” As for why the media continues to attack such research, he believes the answer is clear. Mainstream media are “biased,” and “extremely and irrationally pro-abortion,” and will fight anything that in any way challenges the notion that abortion is an extreme good and is good for women.” And that’s a problem for the abortion industry and friends. He adds:
If we are helping women reverse the effects of mifepristone, that means that women who have initially chosen abortion have changed their minds and now feel that abortion is not the supreme good.
Dr. Delgado penned a response to Newsweek’s editor, and shared a copy with Live Action News. It reads, in part:
… [T]he title stated that our work with the reversal of the effects of mifepristone is not based on science. We have three pillars of evidence.
1. It is well known in all biological systems studied that when you have two molecules competing for the same receptor and you increase the concentration of one, the one with the increased concentration will more likely get the prize and interact with the receptor. It is known that mifepristone was developed and studied for its abortifacient properties precisely because it attaches to the progesterone receptor. That attachment is reversible.
2. Animal studies have demonstrated that when you give a group of pregnant rats mifepristone and progesterone, the effects of the mifepristone are blunted and abortions are prevented.
3. Our data prove that progesterone can safely and effectively reverse the effects of mifepristone. The embryo survival rate is increased from 25% (when no treatment is offered) to 60-70% with our best protocols. There is no increased rate of birth defects in babies exposed to mifepristone and the progesterone used for reversal.
The paper was temporarily retracted simply due to a small technical error involving the dates of the closed data set that was retrospectively analyzed for the study. We anticipate the paper will be republished soon after another review by an institutional review board.
Also, you got the facts wrong about the institutional review board. The initial approval was by the University of San Diego, not the University of California, San Diego. I do not work at the University of California, San Diego; previously I had been a voluntary associate clinical professor, there.
George Delgado, MD
Despite this smear, the future of abortion pill reversal looks bright. “We are planning a new study that will be a randomized control trial comparing different progesterone protocols,” Dr. Delgado said. “Additionally, to further abortion pill reversal and other pro-life research, we are starting the Steno Institute, a non-profit group named after Blessed Nicolas Steno.”
In a medication abortion, the mother first takes mifepristone, which blocks progesterone from reaching the placenta, causing it to break down and starve the baby of vital oxygen and nutrients. After 48 hours, if the mother has not already delivered her deceased baby’s body, she takes misoprostol, which induces labor and causes her to expel the placenta and baby. In two weeks, she is supposed to return to the abortion facility so the abortionist can ensure nothing remains inside her uterus. Any retained remains could cause a dangerous infection. Abortion pill reversal works by giving the mother a regimen of progesterone to counteract the effect of the mifepristone, before she takes the misoprostol.
It’s clear that the media sees abortion as a force for social good that must be protected. But women deserve to know that they still have a choice after undergoing a medication abortion. And after all, isn’t “choice” what abortion activists are claiming to fight for?