Colonoscopies and Abortions

Guess which party Senator Donna Campbell belongs to? Hint? She is in Texas.

Well she is in favour of Senate Bill 537 which would force all State Abortion Clinics to comply with regulations involving surgical centres by providing a surgeon on premises to deal with complications of abortion.

“After a colonoscopy on a man, he comes in bleeding in the emergency room from the rectum and we’ve got a surgeon on call,” Campbell says. “But we don’t have somebody on call for a lady who is hemorrhaging in the uterus from a procedure that was done at a facility that was held at less standards. So I applaud this bill. I jumped on this bill as a physician and as a woman.”

While to most readers the comparison of the two procedures may sound weird or even valid. After all it’s a plan to increase the safety of abortions.

Well… It’s a plan that’s worked before. By setting an unreasonable standard of care you can force the closure of clinics. This bill is designed to close and reduce the availability of abortions. It would be like suggesting that Kindergartens possess a full paramedic team and A&E room on site to care for children’s injuries. The fact of the matter is that abortion clinic Obs/Gynaes rarely have ER admission privileges because for that you require working in a hospital’s A&E. Don’t worry, dermatology clinics don’t have them either.

It’s designed to ban abortion via the back door.

A colonoscopy is not an abortion, the two procedures aren’t the same.

And if you haven’t guessed the good Senator’s party affiliation? It’s Republican.


  1. otranreg says

    This bill is designed to close and reduce the availability of abortions.

    And to scare women who’d like to abort even further: ‘what, it could go so bad that I’d need an operation? Fuck that!’

    While to most readers the comparison of the two procedures may sound weird or even valid.

    Aren’t you a doctor? Everyone knows that both revolve around holes in the naughty area! Proximity equals similarity, and so on!

  2. Carol Lynn says

    But.. but…. I’ve never heard of a routine colonoscopy being done in a fully equipped trauma center. Everyone I’ve ever had or known of was done in little stand-alone day clinics that specialize in them. What on earth is she talking about?

  3. coragyps says

    What Carol Lynn said – my colonoscopy was several blocks from the nearest emergency room.

    We have a couple of legislators here in Texas that are 1) rational persons and 2) possibly smart-assed enough to introduce some bills to look out for the health and safety of us men, if they could just let the wimmens look after their own concerns for a minute or two. I’d like to see a bill that mandates digital prostrate exams for any legislator proposing any legislation dealing with birth control, abortion, or any other women’s health issues. And, if the legislation is typical Republican dreck like SB 537, the exam must be conducted by a licensed physician with hands at least the size of the average Texas professional basketball player’s hands.

    Just for the health of the lege, y’know. And unfunded exams – we loves us some “small government.”

  4. Psychopomp Gecko says

    I say we change the headline and put the story back out there.

    “Republican Senator Equates Babies to Shit”

    Also, thank you for the line, in this post mentioning colonoscopies: “It’s designed to ban abortion via the back door.”

    Man, I wouldn’t want the kind of doctors leaving a man’s butt bleeding from a colonoscopy to be handling a woman’s uterus. That’s just begging to screw something up.

  5. says

    It’s actually very easy to cause a rectal bleed. It’s why colonoscopies are saved for serious conditions. The lining of the intestine isn’t really processing rigid objects.

  6. SmartKat says

    There was no real information here to argue against those who compare the medical procedure of abortion to the medical procedure of a colonoscopy. It does appear that a colonoscopy is usually LESS invasive than an abortion given the fact that a colonoscopy SOMETIMES might result in removing a polyp discoverd during the procedure but an abortion ALWAYS, by its very nature involves removing something attached to the uterine wall.
    So please give me information that I can take to my prolife friend I am discussing this with. WHY is a colonoscopy require these safety measures but an abortion does not?

  7. says

    Except the uterine wall is designed to be shed and removed. Women lose their uterine wall on a monthly basis.

    The inherent risk in an abortion is low. The majority of risk exists in late term abortions and those are for very special cases.. The vast majority of abortion occurs before the 24th week. Mostly in the first 8 to 12 weeks.

    The abortion at this point is medical. However, late term abortions have complications but these are rarer than the complications of colonoscopies as the uterus is thickly muscled and so is more robust than the colon.

  8. SmartKat says

    Thank You, Avicenna! You know, you are the first person on the internet who has answered that question! On Raw Story, everyone is only interesting in attacking the right so insults are more important than facts, even when the facts are on their side!
    Again, thank you.

  9. SmartKat says

    Response from a friend “The uterine wall is not designed to be shed in mid pregnancy. It becomes very firmly attached – otherwise miscarriages would be the norm. I did a paper on the complications of abortion. Very little research has been done on the topic because most patients are reluctant to revisit the experience. However, complications are not at all uncommon, and there is always a scar left in the uterine wall. Enough such scars, and there is no longer a good place for the placenta to attach. Many women who have had multiple early-term abortions cannot carry a baby to term.”
    Any reply?

  10. says

    There is no evidence to suggest that having a straightforward abortion has any adverse effects on future fertility or ability to carry a normal healthy pregnancy. If you suffer from any complications during or after your abortion or have repeated abortions you may have an increased chance of suffering late miscarriages or pre-term deliveries in future pregnancies.

    Early term abortions are primarily medical and the abortion occurs by alteration of the hormone profile resulting in the same physiological method of shedding of the uterine wall.

    There are 3 layers of the uterus. The endometrium is what is shed and during pregnancy it “thickens” and during menstruation the entire layer is shed off only to proliferate during the next cycle. This is what is removed. I am afraid your friend is not giving you correct information.

  11. SmartKat says

    She is a good woman but I am sure her sources were as biased as she is. And people tend to hear what they want to hear.

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