HOUSTON - A Houston doctor is resuming regular trips to Iran to save unborn children.
In February, Dr. Alireza Shamshirsaz canceled a trip Iran over his own travel ban concerns. He was scheduled to operate on a pair of twins and another unborn child.
At the time, Doctor Shamshirsaz told KHOU 11 News the children faced certain death without the procedure.
“It was tough, really tough,” Dr. Shamshirsaz said. “The twins died. The other case with a cardiac abnormality was delivered, but after the birth, because of damage to the heart, that kid passed away, too.”
Dr. Shamshirsaz was born in Iran. He is a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Baylor College of Medicine. He specializes in fetal surgery, a skill doctors in Iran are not currently able to perform which doctors operate on babies inside the mother’s womb.
Under President Donald Trump’s original executive order, Dr. Shamshirsaz could have traveled to and from Iran because he is a green card holder in the U.S. He says political uncertainty forced him to cancel the February trip.
“I don’t blame anybody,” Dr. Shamshirsaz said. “It’s a very complex situation. I mostly blame myself.”
An official decision from the U.S. Supreme Court has cleared the clouded travel ban; allowing a scaled back version that like the original order will not affect Dr. Shamshirsaz’s travel. Unfortunately, too late for the three children the doctor didn’t save.
“Sometimes I think you need to risk what you have,” Dr. Shamshirsaz said. “Not regret the future.”
Looking back, the doctor would have risked his working in the U.S., leaving his pregnant wife and taken the trip to Iran.
Dr. Shamshirsaz’s next trip is scheduled for July. He will resume his work training doctors in Iran. He’s scheduled to operate on four pregnant women.
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