The 28-year-old woman who performed a Cesarean section on herself was declared in stable condition two days after her bizarre act of abortion, but will be subjected to psychiatric evaluation prior to the filing of formal charges.
The woman, a native of Isabela province who was abandoned by her husband last year, was a graduate of midwifery, the Philippine Daily Inquirer learned.
She remained under observation at Sta. Ana District Hospital in Manila, according to its director, Dr. Mario Lato.
To the shock of local doctors and the police, the woman slashed her belly open with a kitchen knife to remove her baby from her womb before stitching herself up with ordinary needle and thread.
An aunt found her seated on her bloodstained bed at their house on Nagtahan Street, Sta. Mesa, at around 1 p.m. on Wednesday.
Far from being “standard procedure,” Lato said, “her use of a kitchen knife could give her tetanus so we had to give her shots for that.”
Tetanus has a long incubation period that could take days or sometimes weeks, hence it would be difficult for doctors to anticipate the type of complications that may arise, he said.
Lato said that after the woman sewed herself up, she still had to go under the knife when she was brought to the hospital. She was only able to stitch together her skin and her uterus continued to bleed, he said.
The aborted fetus weighed about two kilos, “equivalent to a baby in full term or nine months,” the surgeon disclosed.
The woman still refused to talk with anybody, he said. “She might simply be depressed or her silence might be a symptom of a more serious mental instability.”
He said the woman would be subjected to a psychiatric evaluation to determine her mental state. “This has to be done because what she did was a criminal act.”
“Her relatives told us that she finished a course in midwifery, but midwives do not perform surgeries. It is not part of a midwife’s job. They can only help in normal deliveries,” the doctor stressed.