LifeSiteNews author Hilary White calls attention to the FDA's investigation of RU-486, a pill used to chemically induce abortion.
NEW YORK, November 23, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The New York Times reports today that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is investigating four of the numerous deaths associated with the abortion pill, RU-486, also called Mifeprex.
The Times said that the FDA is organizing a scientific meeting early next year to discuss what it calls a ďmedical mystery.Ē
A spokeswoman for the drugís manufacturer, Danco Laboratories said, ďI think everyone would like to know what exactly is going on regarding these rare and really serious Clostridium sordellii infections that we have seen happen in California. I don't have an answer for you, and because of that I don't have any running theories.Ē
The mystery cannot be completely unfathomable, however, since research has already been published showing that the drug can cause massive and potentially fatal bacterial infections.
In July of this year, LifeSiteNews.com reported that Professor Ralph P. Miech, a professor emeritus in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology, Physiology, and Biotechnology at Brown University had found that the action of the drug is to suppress the bodyís immune system, leaving it open to bacterial infections that can be deadly.
Writing in the research journal, The Annals of Pharmacotherapy, Dr. Miech said RU 486 ďimpairs the body's ability to fight off C. sordellii and may help spread the bacteria's toxic by-products, a combination that sometimes results in widespread septic shock.Ē
Since its introduction in 1991, according to an article by Dr. Jack Wilke of the Life Issues Institute, the FDA reported that there had been a total of 17 fatalities associated with tubal pregnancies and Mifeprex, the danger of which is listed as a contraindicator. In addition, the FDA said that heavy bleeding for up to 30 days was another problem noted with the drug and the agency has records of 72 cases requiring blood transfusions.
After recording seven nearly fatal cases of severe sepsis which were treated successfully, the FDA, instead of removing the drug from the market, revised its health warning to include the possibility of fatal bacterial infection.
Of the four California deaths currently being investigated by the FDA, Holly Pattersonís is perhaps the most famous because of the education campaign undertaken by her family after her death. Monty Patterson, Hollyís father, told the New York Times that his education campaign has caused at least one family to have tissue samples taken to test for the presence of Clostridium sordellii, the rare bacteria associated with Hollyís and the other California womenís deaths.
Apart from Holly Patterson, the deaths being looked at by the FDA are Oriane Shevin of Sherman Oaks, California, who died at 34 on June 14, 2005 of sepsis; Hoa Thuy Tran, 21, of Orange County, CA who died in 2003 of septic shock associated with the drug; and Chanelle Bryant, 22, of Pasadena, Calif., died six days after taking Mifeprex.