A mother whose doctor suggested she have an abortion because her baby would have Down syndrome recently gave birth to a health baby boy.
At her 12-week ultrasound scan, medics found Rachel Gibson’s unborn baby had excess fluid at the back of his neck — measured to predict the risk of Down syndrome. She was offered an amniocentesis test to determine if her unborn baby had the condition and said doctors then offered her an abortion. She was offered an amniocentesis test to determine if her unborn baby had the condition, but she and her partner Darren declined the test and said they would never even contemplate an abortion, even if an amniocentesis had been positive.
She gave birth to their healthy son, Zane on June 5 last year and now Rachel is urging other parents to think twice before getting the test.
Here’s a news report with more on Rache’s situation and brave decision to choose life.
Doctors became concerned for Rachel after she was rushed to hospital with stomach pains when she was seven weeks pregnant and diagnosed with hyperemesis.
She added: “Two weeks after I was diagnosed [with hyperemesis] I was readmitted for six days because it was so severe. They gave me some medication and I went away again.
“It was when I went for my 12-week scan that they detected excess fluid on the back of his neck in the womb. They then carried out some blood tests and I had to go for another appointment. That’s when they offered to do this amniocentesis procedure so they could check if the baby did have Down’s syndrome.
“But they said the procedure would create an increased risk of miscarriage so we decided against it.
“The combination of my illness and the risk of the baby having the disease was why they offered me an abortion at that stage.
“The doctors said both myself and the baby were at risk but termination was never an option for us.”
She said: “It was a very worrying time when we were told Zane was at high risk of being born with Down’s syndrome but it goes to show that sometimes doctors can be wrong.
“We had a one in 90 chance of having a Down’s syndrome baby which is high risk but the other day I met a woman who was told she had a perfectly healthy pregnancy but her son did have the disease so it goes to show the tests in pregnancy aren’t always right.
“I would say that pregnant women should sometimes trust their own instincts about their unborn child because despite the risks, I always knew Zane would be healthy.”