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'There’s so much confusion' | Houston doctors join five Texas women in suing the state over abortion law

Five Texas women are also suing in an attempt to clarify Texas' abortion law when it comes to medically necessary procedures.

HOUSTON, Texas — Two Houston doctors are part of a lawsuit against the state over its abortion law, along with five Texas women.

Earlier this week, four out of the five women spoke out at the Texas Capitol after suffering complications during their pregnancies. They said they couldn't get the care they needed in Texas.

With over 60 years of experience between them, Dr. Damla Karsan and Dr. Judy Levison, both physicians in obstetrics and gynecology, said that since the enacting of Senate Bill 8 and the overturning of Roe V. Wade, life as a doctor hasn’t been easy.

“There’s so much confusion about what you can and cannot say," Dr. Levison said. 

“At the end of the day, I have to do the right thing," Dr. Karsan with Comprehensive Women's Healthcare said. “You know, S.B. 8 talks about aiding and abetting. What is aiding and abetting?" 

Dr. Levison even decided to partially retire.

“I suddenly realized I can’t practice medicine in a way I was trained to and in the way that I feel is ethical,"  Dr. Levison said.  

The current Texas law prohibits and criminalizes abortion with only one exception – if the mother’s life is in danger. They say that’s where the confusion lies.  

“You almost have to bring the woman to where her life is in danger so that you can say her life is in danger. Because who’s going to protect you if you get arrested, if you get sued," Dr. Karsan said.

“You mention the possibility of life imprisonment, and you’re going to think twice before you come close to that line, wherever it is,"  Dr. Levison said. 

But they said pregnancy care is not a one size fits all approach.

“We’re talking so often here about women with wanted pregnancies who never ever imagined they would be begging for an abortion,"  Dr. Levison said. 

Sometimes, abortion is medically necessary, they said. 

“I think that’s what the public is missing - that wanted pregnancies may need to be ended to save a woman’s life,"  Dr. Levison said. 

So, these doctors argue they need more clarity – which is what they’re asking for in this lawsuit. And they’re hoping lawmakers will hear them. 

“They need to think about if this were your wife, your daughter, your sister,"  Dr. Levison said. 

“I think they should allow those of us who have dedicated our lives to taking care of patients to take care of our patients," Dr. Karsan said.

KHOU 11 News reached out to the defendants in this lawsuit.

Paxton's office said he will do everything in his power "to protect mothers, families, and unborn children, and to uphold the state laws duly enacted by the Texas Legislature."

KHOU 11 has not received a comment from the other defendants in the lawsuit. 

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