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Mandating Ultrasound Prior to Having an Abortion

During a long period of time, American government made numerous attempts to create appropriate conditions for women, who wanted to have an abortion, and provide them with a chance to understand the outcomes of their decisions (Acharya et al., 390). At the beginning of 2011, the American citizens got to know that the senate passed successfully the mandatory ultrasound law. Still, it remains unclear if all women are satisfied with the conditions under which they have to make their decisions whether to have an abortion or not to have it. There are several positions about this issue, when the worth of the bill and the necessity to make ultrasounds are doubtful, when the conditions described in the bill have to be supported, and when women should save their right in regards to abortion. Is it possible that mandatory ultrasound prior to having an abortion may change women’s minds and make them believe that abortion is not the only way out of the situation they are at and to give a birth to a baby is woman’s actual happiness?

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Position One

Mandatory ultrasound may cause a number of misunderstandings among women as they truly believe that it is their right to decide whether to have an abortion or not. They should not be obliged to do something they actually do not want. This is why if they consider abortion as the only right decision in their life, ultrasound should not become an obligation for them because this step may touch upon some personal issues and ethical problems (Graham, Ankrett, and Killick 485). In many states, mandatory ultrasound is also considered to be “unconstitutional because it would be coercive and unduly burdensome” (Gordon 752). So, the supporters of abortion find the idea of mandatory ultrasound as unnecessary and even inhuman and underline that women are free to have abortions without any obligations before society.

However, there are also a number of people, who find the offered bill about mandatory ultrasound as a wonderful way to help many women understand a true worth of the condition they are under. The experience shows 254 women out of 350 agreed to have an ultrasound, and 179 women find this idea positive (Wiebe and Adams 99). Though the ultrasound does not analyze thoroughly ontological status of fetus, women still get a chance to see what is inside and realize what they are going to do (Boucher 15). This is why taking into consideration the opinions of anti-abortion movement representatives, the idea of mandatory ultrasound has a number of positive effects, specially if future mothers are too young to realize the essence of abortion and giving a birth to a baby.

It is also necessary to admit that abortion and mandatory ultrasound should not be always regarded as the words with pure opposite meanings. First of all, mandatory ultrasound does not neglect abortion, and women can agree to have an abortion even after looking at the fetus by means of ultrasound (Saari-Kemppainen et al. 389). Second, women have to understand that abortion is a risky activity, and government should take certain steps to protect its citizens against challenges and healthy problems (Spear 32). And finally, women, who have not given birth to babies yet, should have a chance to realize what is inside of them prior to having an abortion. So, it sounds rational to provide women with a chance to make ultrasounds prior to abortion, still, this activity should be mandatory only for women, who have not experienced pregnancy yet or who may have some complications as a result of abortion.

In my opinion, mandatory ultrasound is a good idea in all senses. There are many women, who decide to have abortion without regarding their future opportunities but being under the impact of the current state of affairs. It does not actually matter whether a future mother is a 19-year old girl or a 35-year old woman. Abortion is a kind of crime in regard to another unborn person, and women should understand its essence and its impact looking at the body they are going to kill. Nowadays, it is not an easy thing to give a birth to a healthy baby (Quinton, Cook, and Peek 274) and women should not deprive themselves of the opportunity to increase our population and introduce a new person to the world.

Claim about the Issue

It is hard to stay unbiased when the issue of abortion and human life is under consideration. Each person has the right to support or oppose mandatory ultrasound as well as abortion. However, from a religious and ethical point of view, abortion remains to be a murder, a crime that keeps in mind for the rest of human life, and women must understand how significant their decisions can be. Mandatory ultrasound prior to having an abortion is a good chance to see your future baby and to realize whether abortion is the only way to achieve good result and improve this life at the very moment.

Works Cited

Acharya, Ganesh, Haugen, Michael, Brathen, Anders, Nilsen, Ingard, and Maltau, Jan Martin. “Role of routine ultrasonography in monitoring the outcome of medical abortion in a clinical setting.” Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, 83.4. (2004): 390-394.

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Boucher, Joanne, “Ultrasound: A Window to the Womb? Obstetric Ultrasound and the Abortion Rights Debate,” Journal of Medical Humanities 25.1 (2004): 7-19.

Gordon, Matthew. “Recent developments in health law.” The Journal of Law, Medicine, & Ethics 35.4 (2007): 751-759.

Graham, O., Ankrett, S., and Killick, S.R. “Viewing ultrasound scan images prior to termination of pregnancy: Choice for women or conflict for ultrasonographers?” Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, 30.5 (2010): 484-488.

Quinton, A.E., Cook, C,M. and Peek, M.J. “A Longitudinal Study Using Ultrasound to Assess Flow-Mediated Dilatation in Normal Human Pregnancy.” Hypertension in Pregnancy, 26.3 (2007): 273-281.

Saari-Kemppainen, S., Karjalainen, O., Ylostalo, P. et al. “Ultrasound screening and perinatal mortality: controlled trial of systematic one-stage screening in pregnancy”, The Lancet, 336.8712, (1990): 387-391.

Spear, Hilta, J. “Regular abortion: Informed consent or selective disclosure.” Nursing Forum 39.2 (2004): 31-32.

Wiebe, Ellenm R. and Adams, Lisa. “Women’s perceptions about seeing the ultrasound picture before an abortion.” European Journal of Contraception & Reproductive Health Care, 14.2 (2009): 97-102.

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StudyCorgi. (2022, May 6). Mandating Ultrasound Prior to Having an Abortion. Retrieved from


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