Husband named brain-dead wife's foetus

2014-01-28 22:29

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Dallas - Before a pregnant, brain-dead Texas woman was taken off life support over the weekend at the end of a long legal battle, her husband said he decided to name what would have been the couple's second child.

Erick Munoz said Monday he gave the 23-week-old foetus the name Nicole, the middle name of his late wife, Marlise Munoz. He would not say why he chose to name the foetus.

The case inspired debates about abortion and end-of-life decisions, as well as whether a pregnant woman who is considered legally and medically dead should be kept on life support for the sake of a foetus.

Republican Texas Governor Rick Perry and the two leading candidates running to replace him noted the case, but none has called for any new laws or action yet.

In recent years, the Texas Legislature has enacted several new anti-abortion restrictions, including setting the legal guideline for when a foetus can feel pain at 20 weeks. Similar laws have gone into effect around the US.

Munoz said doctors at John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth indicated to him that the foetus would likely have been a girl, though his attorneys previously said the foetus suffered from lower body deformation that made it impossible to determine its sex.

"They think it was a female," Munoz said in a brief telephone interview with The Associated Press.

Munoz told WFAA-TV in an interview aired on Monday evening that he has seen many negative comments about his decision, but he feels he made the right choice.

"I'm just glad they are not in my shoes. I hope every day that no one ever has to go through what I went through," he said.

Munoz said his wife will be cremated and there are no plans for memorial or funeral services because the family is concerned that protesters would show up.

"She made me a better man, and I thank her for it. I thank her very much," he said.

Both the hospital and his attorneys agreed the foetus could not have been born alive that early in the pregnancy, and the foetus was not delivered when the hospital complied on Sunday with a judge's order to pull any life-sustaining treatment from Marlise Munoz.

Doctors said she was brain-dead in November after Erick Munoz found her unconscious in their Haltom City home, possibly due to a blood clot, but the hospital had kept on machines to keep her organs functioning for the sake of the foetus, which it said was per Texas law.

Munoz's attorneys, Heather King and Jessica Hall Janicek, had issued a statement last week saying that according to medical records, "the foetus is distinctly abnormal". The attorneys said the foetus also had fluid building up inside the skull and possibly had a heart problem.

Erick Munoz told the AP earlier that he believed in God but felt his training as a paramedic suggested the foetus would have been seriously harmed by his wife's condition.

Erick Munoz sued the hospital because it would not remove life support. He said his wife, also a paramedic, had told him she would not want to be kept alive under such circumstances.

In refusing his request, the hospital cited Texas law that says life-sustaining treatment cannot be withdrawn from a pregnant patient, regardless of her end-of-life wishes.

Legal experts told the AP that the hospital was misreading the Texas Advance Directives Act and that the law isn't an absolute command to keep a pregnant woman on life support.

Judge RH Wallace Jr sided on Friday with Erick Munoz, saying in his order: "Mrs. Munoz is dead."

During a debate among the four big-name Republicans running for lieutenant governor on Monday night, all of them said the judge erred in ordering that Marlise Munoz be removed from life support and vowed if elected to tighten state law so that a similar outcome couldn't happen again.

- AP

Read more on:    us  |  health
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Madonsela to probe ANC food-for-votes claims

Public protector Thuli Madonsela has launched an investigation into whether the ANC has used state resources for its electoral campaign, says a report.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Samsung Galaxy S III 16GB

There are no straight lines in nature. The Samsung  GALAXY...

From R3525.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be good at organising events but they do take their toll on your energy levels. You may need some time out today just to...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.