The Second Trimester
The D&E (dilation and extraction) is the most common type of second trimester abortion. During this procedure, the mother’s cervix must be dilated much more than in a first trimester abortion simply because her baby is now too large to pull it from the uterus solely by using the suction machine.
After sufficient dilation is accomplished, the abortionist begins the D&E procedure by rupturing the amniotic sac which contains the unborn child. He then begins the process of dismembering the baby and pulling it out of the uterus in pieces. To do this, the abortionist uses suction as well as surgical forceps which basically act like a pair of pliers. He inserts this instrument into the uterus and starts to open and close it until a part of the baby or placenta is grasped. That piece is torn off and is pulled out. This process is repeated until the abortionist feels that the procedure has been completed.
Sometimes, the baby’s skull is too large to pull out of the uterus, so the abortionist must first crush it with the forceps. The abortionist will know that the child’s skull has been sufficiently collapsed when the baby’s brains flow out of the uterus. Among abortionists this is called the “calvaria sign” and it signals that the skull will then be much easier to remove.
Once the abortionist has pulled out everything he can feel with the forceps, he will use a curette to scrape any remaining parts off the sides of the uterus. After that, the suction machine can be used again to vacuum up whatever debris is still in the uterus.
Throughout a D&E procedure, all of the extracted baby parts are placed on a tray where they are then reassembled. This is done to make certain that the entire baby is accounted for and that no parts are left behind.
One way that the D&E procedure is often made easier is by killing the baby a day or so before the procedure is scheduled. This extra step is generally referred to as a “ditch” and is accomplished by inserting a long needle through the mother’s abdomen and into the heart of her baby. Then, a chemical agent – usually digoxin – is injected through the needle causing the child’s death. The advantage of doing this is that the feticidal agent (digoxin) causes the child’s body to soften, making the dismemberment and removal process much easier. Despite that advantage, however, ditching does have one potential downside. Because the chemical used to kill the baby is toxic, it is crucial for the abortionist to know that he has inserted the needle into the baby and not the mother. To verify that, the abortionist will sometimes let go of the needle before injecting the drug and see if it jumps around independent of the mom’s movements. If so, he knows that he has hit the baby and can proceed. (This part of the ditching process is sometimes referred to as “harpooning the whale”).
A variation of the D&E is called intact D&E. In this procedure, the baby is not pulled out in pieces but removed whole. Normally, the abortionist will use a feticidal chemical to kill the baby first or he will position the baby so that he can crush its skull. However, in some cases the baby will actually survive the procedure and emerge alive. In the abortion industry, live births are referred to as “The Dreaded Complication.”
Since most Intact D&E abortions are performed on babies who are too young to survive once separated from the mother, the usual response to a live birth is to simply set the child aside and allow it to die on its own. The abortion industry calls this practice “comfort care.” In some cases, abortionists have been observed actively killing the child by drowning it, crushing its tracheal tube, or snapping its neck.
Another type of second trimester procedure is known as instillation. This procedure begins with the abortionist sticking a long needle through the mother’s abdomen and into the baby’s amniotic fluid sac. A substantial amount of amniotic fluid is then drained from the sac and replaced with either a saline or urea solution. This usually kills the child, but it may take hours during which some women report feeling their baby violently thrashing around. Photos of children killed by instillation procedures generally show massive chemical burns covering the child’s entire body.
Once the process of killing the baby has been initiated, the mother is given drugs to induce labor so she will eventually deliver the dead child. Because there have been cases where babies have survived this process, some abortionists inject a drug into the baby’s heart prior to delivery to make sure it is dead. (Urea has also been used as a prepping agent for D&E abortions. The urea is inserted into the amniotic sac but instead of inducing labor, a D&E is performed. The advantage of this is that the urea solution helps soften up the baby and makes it easier to dismember and remove.)
Another type of second trimester procedure is called induction. The mother is given a drug – usually prostaglandin or oxytocin – that causes her to go into labor. Often the abortionist will kill the baby at the same time in order to avoid the possibility that the mom will deliver a live baby. In other instances, the labor-inducing drug which was given to the mother will kill her baby. However, it is well established that live births are a real possibility with induction procedures. As in the case of Intact D&E abortions, these procedures are usually performed on babies who are too young to survive outside the womb. Again, if the baby emerges alive, the usual response is to set the child aside and allow it to die on its own, or for the abortionist to kill it once it’s delivered.
The final methods of second trimester abortion are hysterectomy and hysterotomy. Of the more than one million American babies killed by abortion every year, approximately 5000 are destroyed in this manner. The relative rarity of these procedures is driven by the fact that they have a higher incidence of maternal complications and death than other second trimester abortion methods. During a hysterectomy abortion, the mother’s entire uterus (including the baby) is removed and the baby usually dies during the procedure. The hysterotomy abortion is similar to a cesarean section. The abortionist does not remove the uterus, but cuts it open and removes the baby. If the child was not killed prior to removal, it is set aside to die.