“Symphysiotomy” encouraged by the Catholic Church is a ‘maverick’ practice, and a barbarous procedure. It is once again being performed on innocent pregnant women in lieu of a Caesarean.
Irish woman awarded $600,000 over barbaric broken pelvis birth procedure
By JAMES FOLEY, IrishCentral.com Staff Writer
March 24, 2012
An Irish woman who had a symphysiotomy performed after childbirth in 1969 has been awarded €450,000 ($600,000) for medical negligence.
Symphysiotomy was a procedure to break the pelvis during a difficult birth and was carried out on about 1,500 women in Ireland between 1944 and 1992.
An Irish parliamentary hearing has heard how the barbaric practise took place. Many doctors, encouraged by the Catholic Church, apparently carried it out because it was felt that it gave a better opportunity than Caesarean births for the mother to become pregnant again.
The lobby group Survivors of Symphysiotomy said it was a deliberately performed procedure.
“Symphysiotomy was a maverick practice, a barbarous procedure that should never have been performed except in the direst of emergencies.
“The surgery was exhumed at the National Maternity Hospital by doctors who were hostile to the idea of family planning and who were looking to replace Caesarean sections with an operation that would facilitate large families.”
Cavan-Monaghan TD Heather Humphries (FG) said she felt “physically sick” when women told how they were “restrained, with their arms pulled back and held down for the procedure to take place”.