by Steven Ertelt
February 1, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Members of Congress held a press conference on Wednesday to discuss new research showing eight women internationally have died from using the dangerous RU 486 abortion drug, including five in the United States. More than 840 women have also experienced sometimes life-threatening complications from using the drug.
Maryland Congressman Roscoe Bartlett was joined by more than a dozen members of Congress who are backing his effort to suspend sales of the RU 486 abortion drug while its safety is investigated.
Bartlett has introduced HR 1079, otherwise known as Holly’s Law. It’s named after Holly Patterson, a California teenager who died from using the abortion drug she received at a Planned Parenthood facility.
"Today, we present stronger evidence that RU-486 kills and injures women," Bartlett said.
The new study, co-authored by Dr. Donna J. Harrison and Dr. Margaret M. Gary appears in the February 2006 issue of The Annals of Pharmacothrapy.
The study focuses on complications from RU 486 abortions contained in reports to the FDA from Danco Laboratories, the maker of the abortion drug, filed between September 2000 and July 2005.
They analyzed 607 reports between September 2000 and September 2004 and found five deaths and 64 life-threatening and 224 severe events.
Harrison noted that 237 women hemorrhaged, with 42 losing over half of their blood volume. Some 68 women required blood transfusions and four women went into the kind of septic shock that killed others.
Reacting to the new studies, Holly’s father Monty Patterson said, "How can we expect a teenager to figure out if she’s beyond the so-called normal side effects of an RU-486
abortion to serious adverse events?"
Congressman Bartlett said Congress should suspend sales of the abortion drug because Danco is not a responsible manufacturer.
"The FDA rarely pulls drugs from the market. Responsible manufacturers pull drugs from the market," he explained. However, RU-486’s manufacturer, Danco, is a shell company. Its only product is RU-486. That is why Congress must act."
Bartlett also pointed out that many reports of women who have been injured from the abortion drug aren’t surfacing because they’re not always telling doctors that they took the abortion pills in the first place.
"It is unacceptable for the FDA to expose women to the risk of serious injury, especially deadly infections whose symptoms are similar to any RU-486 abortion when we have
documented cases of medical professionals who have failed to diagnose them," he said.
Other members of Congress including Rep. Joe Pitts of Pennsylvania, Rep. Peter Hoekstra of Michigan, and Rep. Chris Smith of New Jersey appeared at the press conference and urged strong support for the bill.
TAKE ACTION: Contact your member of Congress and urge strong support for Holly’s Law. You can find contact information for any Congressman at https://www.house.gov.