Canada Abortion Practitioner Faces Lawsuit Over Botched Abortion

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Oct 18, 2006   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Canada Abortion Practitioner Faces Lawsuit Over Botched Abortion Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
October 18
, 2006

Vancouver, Canada ( — An abortion practitioner in Canada is the subject of a medical malpractice lawsuit from a woman who says an abortion he did on her went horribly wrong. Karin Smith says Garson Romalis did an abortion on her in 2004 that caused her a stroke that left her with brain damage and other physical problems.

Smith was 18 weeks pregnant when she went to the British Columbia Women’s Hospital in November 2004. Her baby was diagnosed with trisomy 13, a syndrome with multiple abnormalities that causes most babies to die shortly after birth.

In her lawsuit, Smith says Romalis said she needed a "three-day therapeutic termination procedure."

According to a report in The Province newspaper, the abortion was done on November 4 but Smith was in severe pain the next morning.

She "was awakened by severe pain in her lower back and her night and bedclothes were wet from perspiration, and [Smith] was unable to get out of bed without assistance," her lawsuit said.

Smith had intense pain for two weeks before doctors eventually diagnosed her with meningitis, an inflammation of the membranes usually due to the spread of an infection. She eventually had a stroke, which required open-heart surgery.

The events left her with permanent brain damage, arthritic pain, numbness in her fingers and toes, severe migraines, nausea, depression and anxiety, The Province newspaper reported.

"Romalis owed a duty to the plaintiff to exercise the reasonable care, skill, diligence, competence and good judgment of a medical practitioner in his area of expertise in diagnosing, treating and caring for the plaintiff," Smith’s lawsuit says, according to the news report.

The lawsuit also names two other doctors, two hospitals and health authorities.