A woman in Texas has filed an emergency lawsuit, requesting a Travis County judge to allow her to get an abortion.
As reported by The Texas Tribune, 31-year-old Dallas woman Kate Cox wants to terminate her pregnancy after she was diagnosed with full trisomy 18 last week (Nov. 28). The condition is a chromosomal anomaly that is nearly always fatal before or shortly after birth.
According to the lawsuit, the fetus is developing an umbilical hernia, a twisted spine, a club foot, and an irregular skull and heart. Cox, who previously had Cesarean sections when delivering her two children, also has elevated glucose and underlying health conditions.
The lawsuit claims that carrying the current pregnancy to term places Cox at increased risk of gestational hypertension and diabetes and complications from anesthesia and cesarean section.
“Ms. Cox’s physicians also explained that a C-section at full term would make subsequent pregnancies higher risk and make it less likely she would be able to carry a third child in the future,” the lawsuit stated.
“I’m trying to do what is best for my baby and myself, but the state of Texas is making us both suffer,” Cox said in a press release. “I need to end my pregnancy now so that I have the best chance for my health and a future pregnancy.”
Cox’s request marks the first time since before Roe V. Wade in 1973 that a woman sought the intervention of a court to allow her to terminate a pregnancy. The case is also the first lawsuit of its type after Texas nearly banned all abortions in 2022.
On the same day as Cox’s diagnosis last week, the Texas Supreme Court heard arguments in Zurawski v. Texas, a landmark lawsuit in which 20 women and two doctors are challenging Texas’ abortion laws related to complicated pregnancies.
The case, which the Texas Supreme Court is currently considering, questions whether the state’s abortion laws apply to women with non-viable pregnancies like Cox’s. However, it argued that all of the plaintiffs do not have the legal right to sue because they are not currently seeking abortions.
In a prior ruling, a Travis County judge ruled that the state laws should not apply to patients facing potentially life-threatening medical complications or those who have received lethal fetal diagnosis. However, the Texas attorney general’s office placed it on hold after appealing that ruling. Moreover, the state has maintained its position on the law, which does not permit abortions in cases where the fetus is unlikely to survive after birth.
Photo Courtesy: Unsplash/Pete Alexopoulos
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer and content creator. He is a contributing writer for Christian Headlines and the host of the For Your Soul Podcast, a podcast devoted to sound doctrine and biblical truth. He holds a Masters of Divinity from Alliance Theological Seminary.