Stop Blaming Doctors for Babies Born After Vasectomy

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vasectomyIf you've ever tried to put a figure on how much your kid is worth, here's a new way to think of it. A couple who got pregnant after the husband had undergone a vasectomy is suing his doctor for $650,000.

That's how much Scott and Donnita Bassinger they say it will cost to raise their son to adulthood and send him to college -- all of which they put at the doctor's feet. They say the doctor didn't tell them that Scott's tubes were thin and difficult to dissect, and they blame the doctor for forcing Donnita to go through with a risky pregnancy at 42. And with that blame goes my sympathy for them.

Sure, the doctor didn't do a perfect vasectomy. But he wasn't in the bedroom putting a gun to the Bassingers' head and telling them to have sex. They made their son, not the doctor.

I say this not without a sense of foreboding. I understand better than most that the point of a vasectomy is to protect yourself from future progeny. My husband had one several years ago, after we'd decided once and for all that we were "one and done" as parents. If if failed, I'd be angry, and freaking out about money.

But before we chose the vasectomy, we did a lot of research into the various forms of birth control. We knew we were done. There was no need for a temporary method. Besides tubal ligation, the vasectomy was one of the most permanent forms, making it the best option for us.

The other thing we cared most about? How fail safe each method was. Condoms break. The birth control pill was quoted as around 97 percent effective. Vasectomy was one of the best. Its failure rate is just .02 to 2 percent. We took the leap, and so far it's worked for us. But we've known better than to ignore the possibility of failure -- even the semen test isn't failsafe. We're aware that the only truly fail safe method of birth control is abstinence. And as long as we're not willing to go that route (hopefully we never will be), it's our cross to bear.

It's also our responsibility to follow through with our actions. Although I'm no advocate for abortion as birth control method, if Donnita was truly at medical risk, she had that option open to her. The decision to carry the pregnancy to term was the Bassingers' alone, as was the decision not to give him up for adoption.

Unless there is clear mismanagement on behalf of a physician, is the responsibility for raising a post-vasectomy baby really the doctor's?

 

Image via Public Domain Photos/Flickr

trying to conceive, motherhood

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miche... micheledo

I have no sympathy for them.  If the baby is THAT much of a burden take it to the fire department or the police station.  It's your baby, you made it, take responsibility for him or give him to someone else to raise.  Better yet, give it to the doctor.  :D

miche... micheledo

HIM not IT

knfisch knfisch

Heck no!! I HATE when people pull crap like this! Unless you remove the womens ovaries or uterus there is no guaranteed way of permanent birth control. Both tubals and vasectomies have a risk of failing. Our bodies were made to reproduce you can't blame a doctor for them doing what they were meAnt to do. I'd be pretty peeved as well but I know that if i ever end up pregnant again that that child is just meant to be born and

knfisch knfisch

Besides that people like this is what is wrong with healthcare in America. If people stopped suing doctors for every little thing that annoys them doctors wouldn't have to pay so much in insurance for themselves and lawyers fees etc and they wouldn't have to charge as much to pay for it.

Pishyah Pishyah

" They say the doctor didn't tell them that Scott's tubes were thin and difficult to dissect, and they blame the doctor..."  If this is true then they have a point. 

Tiffany Fisher

pishyah,


my husband had one and if what they are saying is true,then they were never truely sterile and it should have been shown in the sample they should have turned in

Leah Bennett

In this case, The dr, is to blame because he didn't inform the couple That his tubes were thin. However, I feel that this child was meant to be born. I would not sue the dr for child that has been brought to me as a miracle. That is wrong. . . . . But the couple does have a point. Children are expensive. Its almost like if you have a plummer come to your house and he works on your pipes.....You wash some clothes and leave the house and when you return its flooded. Is it your responsibility to pay for the damages because you washed your clothes? hmmm.....I am sitting on a fence with this one.

lovin... lovinangels

Um.


Ok. If I got pregnant, (my husband had a vasectamy after our third) I'd have a fourth. Why? because I believe abortion is murder. I DON"T have a choice about carrying through a pregnancy. I know it's legal, but to me, it's morally wrong, and would be an unforgivable sin.


Just because something is legal doesn't make it right. If the doctor failed to disclose crucial information as to the effectiveness of the procedure, then he should pay.


If they skipped the sterility test (many men do), and just assumed that they were sterile, well, the jokes on them.

sweet... sweetheart1985

However much I dislike the sue-happy people, or people just looking for an excuse to do so, I have to say this is a damn good reason to do so.


If my husband got a vasectomy, I'd expect to NOT be able to get pregnant. The reason I'd have him GO THROUGH that is so we wouldn't have to worry about condoms, pills or other hormonal methods. If the doctor messed that up, I'd be pretty upset about that. And in my eyes, HE messed up HIS job. That's what you paid him for.


At the VERY least, I'd be getting a full refund.

Mom2j... Mom2jngnc

I would be suing too. My DH had a vasetomy after our 4th due to teh complications we encountered. We went through the steps required to get back our 2 zero counts to get the green light.

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