Mother Can Sue Abortion Business Over Daughter’s Abortion Death

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 10, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Mother Can Sue Abortion Business Over Daughter’s Abortion Death

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by Steven Ertelt Editor
June 10, 2005

Chicago, IL ( — An Illinois appeals court has ruled that a woman whose 13 year-old daughter died following a botched abortion has the right to file a lawsuit against the abortion business where it was performed.

Dianne Adams initially filed a wrongful death suit related to her daughter Deanna Bell’s death in 1994 and, five years later, a jury ruled in favor of the abortion facility.

In 2000, an appellate court reversed the decision and said the judge in the initial case wrongly blocked some evidence from being admitted.

Adams attempted to re-file the case last year, according to an AP story, but a judge ruled too much time had elapsed since Bell’s death. The appeals court decision Friday reinstates the lawsuit.

On September 4, Bell had the D&E abortion procedure performed under general anesthesia.

According to court records, Bell was given 150 milligrams (mg) of Brevital as an induction dose and three subsequent maintenance doses of 100 mg, 100 mg, and 50 mg.

Brevital is a fast-acting barbiturate. Recommended doses, according to the medical literature, for a patient of Bell’s weight would have been 53 mg to 70 mg as an induction dose and subsequent maintenance doses of 20 mg to 40 mg every four to seven minutes.

Attorneys for Adams argue the high doses caused respiration problems that eventually led to Bell’s death.

Bell returned the next day and was given an even higher dose of the anesthesia drugs because she appeared to be nervous and because the extraction procedure to remove laminaria is painful.

After the abortion, while being transferred to the recovery room, staff noticed Bell turned pale and began having significant breathing problems.

The only staff member on hand at the time was a woman who had no medical training. Adams’ attorneys say at least two registered nurses should have been with bell during the recovery.

She showed no signs of response to resuscitative measures later administered by nurses and the abortion practitioner and eventually died.

Adams’ attorneys also note that abortion facility staff should have been trained in advanced cardiac life support protocols (they were not) and should have called 911 for help when Bell went into cardiac arrest before her death.

The abortion was performed at Albany Medical Surgical Center, operated by Family Planning Associates Medical Group, Ltd.

Related web sites:
2000 Appeals Court decision