The Seattle Girl Who Suffers From a Mysterious Illness

The story is unfolding in Seattle.

The parents of nine-year-old "Ashley" have gone public to tell their side of the story this week.

She suffers from a mysterious illness called "static encephalopathy."

She will never be able to take care of herself.

That is why her parents made the unusual decision to have doctors give her massive amounts of estrogen and remove her uterus to stop her from growing.

Dr. Michael Kalichman of the University of California at San Diego said, “The parents really had two choices in front of them. One was to keep the child at home if she remained small or to institutionalize the child because they couldn't take care of her anymore.”

Dr. Benjamin Wilfond of the Seattle Children’s Hospital added, “I think each case needs to be looked at very specifically and very individually so it's very difficult to say what an individual family might decide depending on the circumstances of the child.”

Many ethicists have weighed in sympathizing with the parents.

Others say it is a slippery slope toward making other choices that should be out of human hands.

Either way, it is pretty safe to say this will not be the last we hear of the issue.


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