Woman left clinging to life after life-threatening abortion complication

A woman was left seemingly near death after an abortion in March in Baltimore, Maryland — but many of the details are still not known.

Operation Rescue reported that on March 3, 2023, 40 Days for Life participants saw a woman being taken out of the Hillcrest Clinic of Baltimore on a gurney. After much difficulty, Operation Rescue was able to obtain some of the 911 audio, as well as the computer-aided dispatch (CAD) transcript.

Much of the 911 audio was impossible to hear, with words coming across as scrambled. Though the 911 call was incomprehensible, the CAD transcript gave more information. The 18-year-old woman woke up following an abortion, and was having seizures. Perhaps most concerningly, she was experiencing what was described as “agonal breathing,” which is typically a dangerous sign of someone who is experiencing cardiac arrest or a stroke and is potentially near death. It is an unconscious reflex and is often a sign that the heart is not circulating oxygenated blood:

The gasping associated with agonal breathing is not true breathing, but rather a brainstem reflex. Agonal breathing often occurs because the heart is no longer circulating oxygen-rich blood. In other cases, it may be due to the lungs not bringing in enough oxygen.

If a person starts agonal breathing, they should get to the hospital or receive emergency medical intervention immediately, unless they are in a setting intended for the end of their life. Though not always the case, agonal breathing may indicate death is imminent for the individual.

… Agonal breathing can be fatal due to a lack of oxygen reaching the brain.

The CAD transcript also noted that the anesthesiologist was with the patient when she began “desatting,” or experiencing respiratory desaturation. This means her blood oxygen levels are dropping below normal levels. Her condition is not currently known.

Operation Rescue noted that Hillcrest has had issues with anesthesia in the past, having been cited for various problems numerous times for incidents frequently involving conscious sedation; several nurses were cited for not having their nurse-anesthetist certifications.

“This very young woman, with her whole life ahead of her, was obviously fighting to survive after this negligent abortion mill killed her baby,” Operation Rescue President Troy Newman said in a statement. “Our hearts go out to her and her loved ones.”

Target petition

What is Live Action News?

Live Action News is pro-life news and commentary from a pro-life perspective. Learn More

Contact for questions, corrections, or if you are seeking permission to reprint any Live Action News content.

GUEST ARTICLES: To submit a guest article to Live Action News, email with an attached Word document of 800-1000 words. Please also attach any photos relevant to your submission if applicable. If your submission is accepted for publication, you will be notified within three weeks. Guest articles are not compensated. (See here for Open License Agreement.) Thank you for your interest in Live Action News!

To Top