New Study Says Fetuses Don't Feel Pain Before 24 Weeks

photo by chadcrowell

A report by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, which was commissioned by the UK’s Department of Health, has found that fetuses don’t feel pain before 24 weeks (and probably not after for some time) for two reasons: 1) the brain is not formed enough to perceive pain, and 2) the fetus is unconscious. Even though this is a British study, it’s of course important for Americans, especially since Nebraska recently passed a law — the first of its kind — banning abortions after 20 weeks based on the notion that fetuses feel pain. It was not a law based on science, but rather on emotions stirred up by an anti-choice brigade intent on chipping away at reproductive rights one week at a time.

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