Dr. Clinton: In Part One of this interview, we were talking about understanding what's happening in the womb, dealing with the personhood debate. I want to take this a step further. One of the things that you've been involved with is abortion pill reversal. Can you explain a little bit of that to us?
Dr. Lile: We are aware of abortion from the surgical aspects, and that's what a lot of people think of when they hear the word abortion. They think about surgical abortion. But the fastest growing form of abortion is actually with a pill. 39% of all the abortions in the United States currently are being performed not with a surgery but with an abortion pill. In some states like Oklahoma, it's actually up to 53%.
How does a pill cause an abortion? The pill is 98% effective up to 10 weeks along. You can look at any ultrasound that somebody gets in the first trimester, and you can see the baby jumping, sliding, moving around, stretching its back, moving its fingers and toes. That's what we're thinking about when we look at a 10-week-along pregnancy.
At the moment of conception, when we're created in the image of God, lots of changes start to happen in a mother's body, and it's all in preparation for growing the pregnancy. There is one conductor in the orchestra of pregnancy, and that conductor is a hormone called progesterone. It says, "Okay, body, let me tell you what's going on. We've just been blessed with a baby here on the inside, and now, our duty is to support this baby. I'm going to tell you how we're going to do this. We're going to take oxygen, nutrition, proteins and glucose, and we're going to direct it to the baby."
The abortion pill, RU-486 or mifepristone, is very effective in blocking that hormone called progesterone. What happens is when the mom becomes pregnant, the whole body celebrates, and its job is to support the pregnancy because progesterone is telling the body what to do. But then, if RU-486 is given, all of a sudden the body's like, "I could have sworn we were pregnant. I guess we're not pregnant."
Can we reverse that? Yes! We just turn up the volume on progesterone. RU-486 is almost like you put earmuffs on the hearing of the body, and it can't hear that signal that says, "I'm progesterone. We're pregnant." Progesterone can turn the volume up so much that the sound breaks through the proverbial earmuffs. And then the body says, "Oh, my goodness, we actually are pregnant. Let's continue supporting the pregnancy."
Dr. Clinton: So, let's say that a young woman finds herself in a predicament goes to get an abortion and is administered an abortion pill. She has an epiphany where out of somewhere, she changes her mind and says, "I don't want to do this anymore." She's just overwhelmed by it. What's the window here that this can be reversed?
Dr. Lile: Our data shows that if we can administer the antidote, the reversal medication, within 72 hours of taking the RU-486, we can be 70% effective in having a healthy mom and a healthy baby.
Dr. Clinton: And there won't be any damage or harm?
Dr. Lile: The FDA and ACOG, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, says that RU-486 shows no evidence of causing birth defects or being teratogenic. Well, why did they say that? Because it only works 98% of the time. So, when the question was posed to them, "what about the other 2% of the time when the abortion doesn't occur?" They said, "If the pregnancy continues (for those 2%), we don't see anything as far as birth defects."
Dr. Clinton: Is this "anti-abortion pill" available?
Dr. Lile: It is available nationwide. We have a network called Abortion Pill Rescue Network. And we have nurses, trained RNs, that man the hotline. We have 500 doctors nationwide that we have trained in the abortion protocols. At the end of February, I am flying to Ireland to train 60 pro-life OB-GYNs in the science and the technology of saving lives there.
Dr. Clinton: That is just stunning to me.
Dr. Lile: It is, but people don't know it's available, so that is the beautiful purpose of what we are doing here today.
Dr. Clinton: Can we talk suicide for a second? Suicide is rampant throughout our nation, through our youth, our military, and our elderly.
Dr. Lile: There were 1,800 people who have jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge to attempt to end their lives. They walked out onto that bridge saying, "This is my only option. Nobody loves me. Nobody cares for me. Nobody wants to communicate with me. The world would be better without me. I'm going to jump off the Golden Gate Bridge."
They just spent $205 million on a netting system under the Golden Gate Bridge to try to catch these people before they commit suicide. A psychologist realized that some of these people who jump, survive. She found 29 people who lived after jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge and she interviewed them. She wanted to know what was going on.
Dr. Clinton: What were her findings?
Dr. Lile: She found out that 29 of those 29 people, as soon as they realized that they were heading down towards the water, every single one of them immediately regretted jumping. And they cried out, "I want to live! I don't want to die!"
When you think of those 29 of 29 who were trying to commit suicide, who had walked out onto that bridge saying, "This is my only option, I have no other hope, nobody loves me;" you see the same kind of thinking with people walking into an abortion clinic where they say, "Nobody loves me. I have no other options. The best thing for me to do is take the life of that baby."
So, when someone takes that RU-486 abortion pill, and when they have those regrets, we want to let them know that God doesn't expect perfection in their lives, but that He does expect a new direction. And that though you may have taken an abortion pill, there is still hope.
Hope is what keeps us going. You need to know that even though you made a decision that you regret—and you did make a wrong decision (which we all have done in our lives)—that even still, there is hope. Praise God, we now have a 70% chance of reversing the effects of that abortion pill. You will be healthy, and your baby can be healthy, and we can do the right thing.
And we want to make sure that finances are never an impediment as far as them getting the reversal medication. There are pregnancy centers all over the country who have funds just to pay for the reversal medication. So, you have a baby that has a 98% chance of dying, but then for an investment of maybe $109 in medication, we are literally buying back the life of that baby! That's what redemption is. The word redeemed means "to buy back."
We all have the option for redemption. Not only to be redeemed with $109 worth of progesterone, but with something much more precious: We've been redeemed with the blood of Jesus Christ, who has bought us back from the certainty of eternal death.
Dr. Clinton: Thanks to the pro-life movement, we've found that if young women could see their baby in the womb, it would change the game. Talk to us about imaging and what you've learned about its value.
Dr. Lile: First, imaging with ultrasound is safe. Imaging with MRI is safe.
These days, you can go to a place called Peek a Boo or another one called Show Me. You can go in and have them take pictures, 3D pictures of your baby on the inside. And you can see how, "Oh, my goodness, look how much she's got my nose. Or he's got your ears." You can see the precious life within the womb.
So, imaging is a great tutorial instrument for people. But we also use imaging as a diagnostic tool, not just to look and say, "Oh, this baby has a cute nose!" Perhaps the baby has a problem. We use imaging to diagnose, and can now treat some issues on the inside with surgery.
Dr. Clinton: I wanted to bring up an issue that stopped the crowd in their tracks today. A lot of people say it's okay to abort a child even up to the moment of birth. Talk to us about that, and how can a doctor, or how can people do that? How can they even think like that?
Dr. Lile: I get asked a lot, why would a doctor spend 12 years in school learning how to have healthy moms and healthy babies, and then choose to do abortions? I think there's three steps involved.
Number one, it starts off with greed. An abortionist can easily be making $1,000 an hour taking the lives of babies in the womb. If an abortion is about $400 to $450, then easily $1,000 an hour. So, it starts off with greed.
Next, is pride. I would go to the meetings for all the OB-GYNs in the country, and the more notorious late-term abortionists would be out in the foyer. You would see people lining up to shake their hand, to take a picture with them. They'd say, "I want to thank you for doing this service for women that I don't feel comfortable doing." Some would actually sign autographs. So, it starts off with greed, and then it goes to pride because all of a sudden people are lining up, and you can just see the pride in their lives.
The next step is even more evil. What was the big sin of Satan? He wanted to be like the Most High. That was his downfall. So, it started with greed. Then came pride. And now, you have a physician who literally holds a baby's life in his hands. And he feels almost like God. "I can either grant life or I can take life."
And when you have the Democratic party which, as a major plank in their platform, condones abortion for any reason at any gestational age, that's when you realize this is not a choice anymore. This is not Pepsi or Coke or tea or coffee. We are engaged in a spiritual battle, and if we don't use our spiritual tools and spiritual weapons, prayer and the word of God, we are not going to win in this spiritual war.
Dr. Clinton: It's time to get our voice back. It's time to stand boldly for such a time as this. If we can't come together on this, what can we come together on?
Dr. Lile: And if we don't hear the truth from our pulpits… When you look at what Paul wrote to the church in Ephesus, he said, "Pray for me that I would have the courage to speak as I must." That's Paul, who would be stoned and beaten and yet just get up and go to the next city and next synagogue. Paul was asking for prayer. We need to pray for our own pastors. We need to say, "We will support you on this. Our kids and our congregations need to know the truth from the pulpit."
Dr. Clinton: And if we can take our brokenness, give it to the Lord, God can come and step into those moments and say, "You know what? Let's take that mess in your life, whatever it was, and make it a message." Become an ambassador. If there's anybody out there who could be a real champion for life, it's those who really understand this issue. Dr. Lile, thank you for what you do.
Dr. Lile: We've been offered the gift of salvation and forgiveness. Don't let Satan remind you of your past and interfere with your current relationship and growth with him. Press on to the future. It's the message of forgiveness where God says, "I love you. I sent my son. He lived a perfect life, died on the cross, was buried, conquered death, and rose again." If you believe that, you can spend eternity with him.
That's the message of forgiveness. And healing does not occur until you have true forgiveness, which is through the blood of Jesus Christ. It's not about your past. It's about your future. It's not about perfection. It's about a new direction, and that new direction can start today.
Learn More about Dr. Lile
Dr. William Lile is a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist, and has a private practice near Pensacola, Florida. He founded ProLifeDoc.org and produced a short pro-life teaching on DVD titled "God's Miracle of Life." Dr. Lile has served as an instructor for the OB/GYN residency programs at the University of Florida and Florida State Medical School. He earned his D.O. from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, and then completed his OB/GYN residency program through the University of Florida College of Medicine. Dr. Lile has been married to his wife, Lesley, for 25 years and together they have 2 children.