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British Study Shows No Fetal Pain Before 24th Week

06/25/10-by Bridgette P. LaVictoire
One of the big pushes within the anti-choice, pro-Christian patriarchal groups trying to decide what women do with their own bodies has been the recent push to consider the pain a fetus feels during an abortion despite there being no evidence of this happening. There is still no evidence that a fetus feels any pain up until somewhere between the 22nd and 24th weeks of pregnancy largely due to the nature of fetal development. A fetus’ brain is not attached to the body’s nerves by that point. A recent study done by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists in Great Britain found that prior to that window, a fetus was “undeveloped and sedated” due to a combination of the lack of brain connectivity and the state that the womb puts a fetus into.

Anti-choice groups, who are also fairly anti-LGBT, often try to point to conception as the beginning of life despite an historical view inside Christianity that life did not begin until the Quickening, which tended to be around the same time that movement was felt. According to the Bible, life begins when blood flows, and this has, historically, been seen at around that point of movement. Usually, these movements are felt at around 19 weeks.

The Royal College discovered in their study that the pain centers of the brain do not develop until Week 24 in a pregnancy, and that conscious sensation of pain does not begin until after birth due to the way in which the womb protects the fetus from feeling much of anything. Also, the Royal College was trying to determine what qualified as a severe enough deformity to warrant an abortion after that 24th week, but were not able to limit it due to the problem of not knowing what the long term effects of any fetal maldevelopment might be.

Ann Furedi, chief executive of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, stated to the BBC: “Women and doctors need to be able to make informed decisions based on what science says, not what advocates, whether pro-choice or anti-choice, wish it said.” Anne Quesney, international policy and parliamentary adviser at Marie Stopes, which provides abortion services, stated: “The RCOG’s findings should give comfort and reassurance to any woman who finds herself in the extremely distressing position of having to make the decision to terminate a pregnancy at a later gestation.”

Of course, anti-choice advocates tried to backpedal on the issue of fetal pain. A spokeswoman for the charity Life stated: “We believe that the issue of whether or not an unborn child feels pain is highly peripheral to the ethical debate over abortion. Our intrinsic dignity as human beings does not in any way depend on the extent of our ability to feel pain.” This is despite the fact that many groups which are adamant about ensuring that women have no choice in what is done to or done with their bodies were the first to raise the specter of fetal pain.

Prime Minister Cameron is not likely to change the current law in Britain which was laid down in 1967. The United State laws regarding abortion stem from the case Planned Parenthood which dates to the last quarter of the Twentieth Century. Abortion on demand is limited to no later than the twenty-second week except in the case of fetal maldevelopment and maternal survival.

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2 Responses to British Study Shows No Fetal Pain Before 24th Week

  1. Missy Wagoner

    September 15, 2010 at 11:51 pm

    Bridgette,
    I realize that you are probably only a writer, but if this is truly in any study, it has got to be from the Royal College of Idiots. I realize that British health care is among the absolute worst in the world, and that measures have to be taken to ration it, but this bald-face lying in order to further abortions is really appalling. To say the brain is not attached to the body’s nerves until the 22nd to 24th week is an out right lie. In order for the infant to be sucking it’s thumb as early as 9 weeks REQUIRES the brain to be attached to the body’s nerves, as well, the brain-nerve connection must be active and attached for the infant to complete the squinting, swallowing and frowning that is observed in utero at 10 weeks. The somersaults, backflips and scissorkicks observed in utero at 9 weeks require more than a little brain-nerve connection. All this has been recorded by photography in utero. Then let’s talk about how a mother’s emotional state impacts the infant in the womb:
    it is anything but sedated and undeveloped. An infant mirrors all the same signs of stress or eu-stress that his/her mother is exhibiting – this being demonstrated via ultrasound, doppler monitoring, etc – the womb is a very dynamic and ever-changing bio-chemical environment. Shame on these liars, using their so-called expertise to blatantly and unashamedly lie about facts and truth in order to continue rationing of an already sick health care system. This is truly an attempt of the desperate to delude the masses, those of whom I hope are less gullible than you, Bridgette.
    And shame on you, for trying to advance your personal agenda by writing, as truth, something so glaringly false. Hopefully, the true experts will be as indignant as I about this and say so, because, Bridgette, you need to know your king’s new clothes aren’t showing…

    • Bridgette P. LaVictoire

      September 16, 2010 at 9:41 am

      Missy Wagoner,

      The soul of a fetus does not differentiate from its mother until the third month. I know this. You are more than welcome to dismiss this if you want, but it is something I know via things that are not scientific.

      As for the rest, I am a writer, yes, but I am actually a lot more than a writer. Given your attitude both in this and the comment I deleted, you would never believe any of the information I learned through non-research methods. This is why I did not wish to have this discussion. Simply put, my work as a Shaman is dismissed by people trying to push an agenda that life begins at conception. You have a beef with the authors of this study- NOT with me. Go complain to them and stop trying to make me think the way you do because I know a lot more about this than I discuss on this site due to its religious and para-natural nature.