In Amarillo, Texas, a hearing is taking place that could potentially result in the government ending its approval of mifepristone, an abortion drug. The lawsuit was filed by the Alliance Defending Freedom, a Pro-life organization, arguing that the government has ignored the harmful side effects of the drug and put women’s health at risk. The lawsuit is being brought on behalf of four anti-abortion medical organizations and four doctors who have treated patients with mifepristone.
Mifepristone is an abortion drug that has been on the market since 2000. The drug is used in combination with another drug, misoprostol, to end a pregnancy. However, there are concerns about its harmful side effects, particularly when used outside of a clinical setting. The many side effects of mifepristone include heavy bleeding, infection, an incomplete abortion, which may require emergency surgical intervention, abdominal cramping, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever or chills, and allergic reactions to the drug.
U.S. District Court Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk is presiding over the hearing, which previously had not been publicized to limit protests. The hearing is a significant step towards protecting the sanctity of life and ensuring that women’s health is not put at risk by dangerous drugs that are easily handed out in an effort to maintain easy-access abortions. Any decision reached could be appealed to the conservative U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit.
The federal judge questioned government lawyers in a hearing about the safety and approval process for the drug. While the Pro-life groups challenging the drug acknowledged there is no precedent for a court to order the suspension of a long-approved medication, the judge seemed open to the argument that mifepristone had not been properly vetted, as standards for the drug may have been changed in a rush in order to find abortion alternatives following the overturning of Roe v. Wade. The lawsuit accuses the FDA of approving an “unsafe drug regimen” without sufficient study and objects to recent steps that make it easier to obtain the medication. They are asking the judge to issue a preliminary injunction ordering the FDA to withdraw or suspend approval of mifepristone.
Medication-induced abortion has become increasingly contentious since the Supreme Court’s conservative majority overturned Roe v. Wade last June, eliminating the constitutional right to terminate a pregnancy through abortion nationwide. It is also time for the government and state lawmakers to take a closer look at the safety of drugs like mifepristone, and put the health and well-being of women and their unborn children first.
The hearing in Texas regarding the potential ending of government approval of mifepristone is a crucial step toward protecting the health and well-being of women and their unborn children. The safety and efficacy of drugs like mifepristone must be closely examined by the government and state lawmakers to ensure that women’s health is being put at risk.