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What Guttmacher failed to point out in RH


THIS REFERS to two letters, published in the Inquirer, that may be confusing to readers.

The first letter, from Raul Nidoy (“Breathtaking infatuation for RH bill,” Inquirer, 5/10/11), correctly referenced our systematic review, published in the Archives of Family Medicine, in which we concluded, “that good evidence exists to support the hypothesis that the effectiveness of oral contraceptives depends to some degree on postfertilization effects” on the lining of the uterus (endometrium).

This fact is now so well-established in medical literature that the United States Food and Drug Administration says of the pill: “Although the primary mechanism of action is inhibition of ovulation, other alterations include… changes in the endometrium which reduce the likelihood of implantation.”

The American Society for Reproductive Medicine also admits that the pill modifies “the endometrium, thus preventing implantation.”

If a woman on the pill has a breakthrough ovulation, the pill-caused changes in the endometrium will increase the chance of an unrecognized, pill-induced loss of a preborn human.

For those who believe that human life begins at fertilization, then any pill-caused post-fertilization loss of life would be, by definition, an abortifacient.

The second letter, from Guttmacher Institute (“RH research findings distorted,” Inquirer, 7/1/11), claims that the “pill only serves to prevent a pregnancy; it does not terminate a pregnancy. It is blatantly false and against all scientific evidence to claim that the pill is an abortifacient.”

This letter, purposefully we think, does not tell the readers that the Institute defines pregnancy as beginning at implantation, a full 5-7 days after fertilization, when the unborn human, now called a blastocyst (not a “fertilized egg”), is made up of roughly 100 or more cells.

Since the pill does not affect an unborn child after implantation and the Institute defines pregnancy as not beginning until implantation, then they can claim the pill is not an abortifacient, but only because they refuse to define pregnancy as beginning at fertilization.

The bottom line is this: if one believes human life begins at fertilization, then good scientific data exist to demonstrate that the pill works, at times, as an abortifacient.

Furthermore, given that there are highly effective, inexpensive, totally natural, and non-abortifacient methods of birth control (the methods of modern natural family planning), it appears that most arguments for using birth -control pills can be said to be advocating convenience for mothers and fathers at the potential expense of innocent and invaluable human life.

—WALTER L. LARIMORE, MD,

assistant clinical professor,

Department of Community and Family Medicine,

University of Colorado

Health Sciences Center

Denver, CO, USA; JOSEPH B. STANFORD, MD, MSPH, CFCMC, professor, Division of

Public Health,

George D. and Esther S.

Gross Chair,

Department of Family and Preventive Medicine,

University of Utah,

375 Chipeta Way, Suite A

Salt Lake City, UT 84108, USA


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Short URL: http://opinion.inquirer.net/?p=8731

Tags: Guttmacher Institute , letters to the editor , pregnancy , Reproductive Health Bill

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEQVKBXLOSPGK6EPFGO5HYQFXU Stean

    [Furthermore, given that there are highly effective, inexpensive, totally natural, and non-abortifacient methods of birth control (the methods of modern natural family planning), it appears that most arguments for using birth -control pills can be said to be advocating convenience for mothers and fathers at the potential expense of innocent and invaluable human life.]
    And that’s your bottom line? More Pro-Liar religiots at work. Guttmacher has been in the game longer thn you have. Raul Nidoy has distorted and quote-mined far too often, and now even you. Despite your overstated ‘credentials,’ the bulk of credible scientific and medical research proves you otherwise.

    Get yourselves a better cause.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1785095901 Mark Angelo Virly Ching

      Of course I make an argumentum ad hominem. I don’t really have good arguments against the “Pro-Liar religiots”, do I?

    • http://www.facebook.com/walt.larimore Walt Larimore

      Actually, Stean, our “bottom line” is this: “Good evidence exists to support the hypothesis that the effectiveness of oral contraceptives depends to some degree on postfertilization effects” on the lining of the uterus (endometrium). 

      To those who believe that human life begins at fertilization, any postfertilization effect will be an abortifacient effect.There is no published scientific or medical evidence, of which I am aware, that refutes this (much less “proves … otherwise). Furthermore, there is not a single credential of either Dr. Stanford or myself that we’ve “overstated,” despite your claim to the contrary.

      Walt Larimore, MD

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_DGL7P57NL7PTDLY5VMAPZ6XZ4U Bobby

    Dr. Larimore was, by the way, prescribing contraceptive pills for decades and being convinced of the effects of the artificial contraceptive method based on over 90 well researched studies, presented a paper on his own in the American Medical Association Journal on the abortifacient action of the pill and thereafter ceased to prescribe contraceptive pills.  Thus, his credentials borne by experience, solid research and life testimonial should be taken seriously and not cynically spurned by hard headed proponents of the rh bill. He had to write the Inquirer to correct a slant created by an earlier comment by the Guttmacher Institute, so well known for its bias and advocacy of abortion that the contraceptive pill is not abortifacient.  In fact, for convenience and inordinate pleasure, some women take that “morning after pill” to ensure the death of the pre-born human!  If the intent is not very obvious, I don’t know what is!  And, to continue with such a lifestyle, the attitude has been: let us all, even including those who do not subscribe to our lifestyle and intentions, pay the billions necessary to buy condoms and contraceptives for the poor!  This will ensure us of keeping our way of life and eliminate the dregs of life from the face of the earth!  In our selfishness, it is better to dole out money for contraceptives so that the number of the poor will cease to threaten us and knock us off from our comfortable pedestals.  Smart, huh?

    But, good governance, effective economic policies and politically sustained economic management would think otherwise, putting in place a clean government and transparency in the use of public funds.  It will spend the money instead to DEVELOP ITS EXISTING HUMAN CAPITAL: PROMOTE PRODUCTIVITY (BOTH IN TERMS OF QUALITY AND QUANTITY AND IN ALL SECTORS), PROVIDE EMPLOYMENT, LIVELIHOOD AND SKILLS TRAINING APPROPRIATE FOR SPECIFIC NEEDS OF INDUSTRY, BUILD DECENT SHELTER FOR THE POOR AND PROVIDE OPPORTUNITIES FOR THEM IN SUBURBAN CENTERS AROUND REGIONAL INDUSTRIAL CENTERS, WHERE SMALL LIGHT AND HOME/COTTAGE INDUSTRIES AND TOURISM CAN PROSPER, FREEING TRADITIONALLY CONGESTED METROPOLITAN CENTERS FROM ACCOMPANYING PRESSURES, WORKING FOR AN ATMOSPHERE OF PEACE AND ORDER IN THE COUNTRYSIDE SO THAT PROGRESS, EDUCATION, PRIMARY HEALTH CARE SERVICES AND POVERTY ALLEVIATION MEASURES CAN BE DONE UNHAMPERED SO THAT THE ECONOMY CAN MOVE FASTER, MAKING THE COUNTRY MORE ATTRACTIVE FOR LONG-TERM INVESTMENTS, LOWERING THE COST OF ELECTRICITY AND TRANSPORTATION TO TRANSPORT GOODS AND SERVICES BETWEEN ISLANDS ECONOMICALLY, AND STREAMLINING THE RED TAPE IN BUREAUCRACY.

    Thus, the question of putting public funds where the real need is, where it matters most, is important here.  The fight against graft and corruption begins in the process of legislation itself, as far as the state is concerned.  We are a country governed by laws and not by men.  If corruption is already in germine in this process, the whole system would be infected, weakened and abused. We cannot clean the government and effectively use public funds where they should, if we approve the rh bill.  Dr. Lanimore wisely indicated that there are NATURAL FAMILY PLANNING METHODS which can be used by all and any married woman (and man) of reproductive age which are not religion-biased.  In other words, any of these Natural Family Planning Methods can freely be chosen by the couple and they may be adapted to the needs and circumtances of the married couple.  They do not have medical side effects, during, after withdrawal from use, or later in life, are inexpensive and reliable.  They also encourage mutual commitment and dedication of the spouses to each other’s welfare and to that of their family.  It provides the couple the opportunity to practice the natural virtues and even a means of sanctification with God as the center of their married life if the couple still believes in a God, one teaching, one faith.  Otherwise, if the couple places convenience above morality, they can learn from Pfizer’s (which sells “Viagra”) which came out with the survey that statistically sexual partners prefer “hardness” and the length of time it is sustained over FREQUENCY or size of the penis.  This would appear to confirm the wisdom of the Creator who created all things good and beautiful and endowed women with a cycle divided between a fertile and an infertile period during which no ovulation or fertilization is possible during reproductive age.  The attempt of Mr. Lagman and his adherents to force the definition of “conception” to occur at ”implantation” against the universally accepted medical definition of fertilization is already a suspicious sign of influence by the Guttmacher Institute that the President or any anti-abortion believer that there are hidden agendas in the rh bill.  We should be wary of the dangers and not sacrifice “quality” for “frequency.”  We hope for the conversion of pro-rh ultra rightists. NO TO THE RH BILL!!!   

  • http://www.facebook.com/daryl.zamora Daryl Zamora

    Thanks to the doctors who clarified the issue! :) I certainly wish everyone were as levelheaded as they are.

  • Anonymous

    Honor and respect for the human body and the paramount significance of life is shown when the married man is sensitive to the needs, physiology and biological functions of his female partner.  The body of the woman has a menstrual cycle which was put there by the Creator Himself and has a fertile period during which ovulation or fertilization can happen and an infertile period, during which fertilization is not possible (and even during breastfeeding her infant) during reproductive age.  When the other partner reasonably feels, for example, that she does not want sex at the time the male partner asks for it, it is wrong to force oneself on the woman.  If, for the sake of domestic peace, this is repeated often, it is possible that the male partner is insensitive to the needs of his female partner and is treating her only as a “sexual object” not as a full human person who should be respected, loved and treated as an equal.  If, in addition, to satisfy convenience (“pragmatism”, in more philosopical terms), hedonism and pleasure-seeking inordinately, couples resort to artificial contraceptive methods in defiance of the natural order, good natural design for the integrity of sex in the proper context of “sex, love, marriage and family,” such and every action in furtherance thereto, constitute violence to, and undue meddling in the order and design put there by God (by any name), whose eternal law, irregardless of human history (time of Genesis or the current modern world) demands from all men, irregardless of whether they are atheists, Buddhists, freethinkers, Muslims, scientoists, Christians or Catholics, etc., obedience and decrees that human acts should be morally good in accordance with the Natural Law.

    We all love life and naturally abhor death.  Why deny the unborn their right to live?  Sex is noble, good and should not be treated with disrespect, as it is God’s way to share with the crown of His creation, the sublime privilege to create life.  Sex is not a disease, an illness or a physical deformity or dysfunction that should be treated with artificial contraceptive methods (mechanical, surgical/medical, chemical), e.g., be operated on to impair its natural functions (vasectomy, tubal ligation, IUD insertions, etc.), pills taken or injectables administered, etc., and hence there is NO ABSOLUTE NEED TO TAMPER WITH THE NATURAL, GOOD ORDER AND DESIGN OF SEX AND ITS CONSEQUENCES.  During the time that ovulation may happen and the couple want to space the number of their children, they may practice for this occasion during the reproductive age of the woman, the natural, noble and certainly doable virtues of abstinence, temperance, conjugal chastity (for Christians/Catholics), prudence and fortitude.  In all things the rule is: “If it ain’t broke, don”t fix it.”  Artificial meddling by contraception is immoral.  A wrong basis for legislating.  No to the RH Bill!!!  Natural Family Planning Methods are better, can be suited to various needs of couples, are inexpensive, safe and reliable.  The way is clear!  Let this country be contraceptive-free, a nation practicing discipline under God and moral law.  No to the RH Bill!!! 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_OHOD5EA75DBBUH53UKLRXRK764 Mang Teban

    My grateful and heartfelt thanks to Dr. Walter L. Larimore for speaking the truth about contraceptive pills.
    Those of us who care about genuine reproductive health for women should not even think of giving in to any suggestion for clinical trials of pills. I pity those women who bear the complications from repeated use of contraceptive pills. My wife tried contraceptives for two months at that time that both of us were clueless of the abortifacient character of some pills. She developed rashes on her body and a mix of hot and cold flushes. Her doctor told her to stop them and educated us on the dangers of the pills. We thought that it was the simplest form of family planning but we were definitely wrong.

    After trying out the natural family planning methods, my wife and I had experienced the best way to enjoy guilt-free, pleasurable “making love” conjugal time ever. This is how our relationship as a married couple blossomed happily with four children (spaced in between of an average of two to three years) and we also adopted three kids.  We are happy as one modestly big family. Praise be to God who manages our home and takes care of our seven children!



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