doctor's officeNobody likes getting sued. But folks at an Ohio medical clinic tied up in a malpractice lawsuit over a botched abortion that resulted in a mom giving birth to a healthy baby have caught a lucky break. Well, it's better than facing a wrongful death lawsuit, isn't it?

Bringing up abortion in America is a tricky thing. You can easily be dragged down into a policy debate about the right to life. Some will surely cheer that an abortion didn't work, that a child was born despite a woman exercising her right to choose. But in the case of Ariel Knights and her fight against the Akron Women’s Medical Group, the life on the line was the mother's.

Knights was a mother of a pre-schooler when she got pregnant again. She decided to get an abortion because of a genetic medical condition called uterus didelphys that would put her life in danger if she had another child. With a child at home to take care of, Knights feared leaving him motherless.

But in court documents, Knights alleges the abortion wasn't performed properly. A week later she ended up in the ER, where they told her she was still pregnant. Turned down by another clinic that refused to give her what would essentially be another abortion, Knights opted to risk the pregnancy.

Now she's a mother of two.

It's hard to say whether she's lucky or not. She survived a high risk pregnancy and came out on the other end with a healthy baby. That's certainly good news. On the other hand, she went in for an abortion and ended up with a baby ... the two don't tend to go hand in hand. Her chances of ending up in this boat were slim to none -- surgical abortion success rates are around 99 percent.

But let's just look at things from the clinic's perspective. If everything in this lawsuit is to be believed, they screwed up royally, and they put a woman's life at risk in doing it. The chances of that happening are sadly rather high. Medical malpractice is now listed as the third highest cause of death in the United States.

They got lucky because Ariel Knights lived. Period.

We can debate abortion until the cows come home, but let's face it: if this mother had died because an abortion didn't work, where would we be?

 

Image via goblin box (queen of ad hoc bento)/Flickr