Pregnant, brain-dead woman’s husband sues hospital

DALLAS — The husband of a brain-dead, pregnant Texas woman on Tuesday sued the hospital keeping her on life support, saying doctors are doing so against her and her family’s wishes.

The lawsuit filed in state district court asks a judge to order John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth to remove life support for Marlise Munoz, a North Texas woman who fell unconscious in November while pregnant.

Erick Munoz has said a doctor told him his wife is considered brain-dead. Munoz says that he and his wife are both paramedics and are very familiar with end-of-life issues. He says his wife had made her wishes clear to him that she would not want life support in this kind of situation. Marlise Munoz’s parents agree.

But John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth says it can’t follow Erick Munoz’s directive due to a state law that prohibits life-saving treatment from being denied to pregnant patients. Experts familiar with the Texas law say the hospital is incorrectly applying the statute because Munoz would be considered legally and medically dead.

Munoz found his wife unconscious in the early morning on Nov. 26. The family says it doesn’t know the exact cause of her condition, though a pulmonary embolism is a possibility. Marlise Munoz was 14 weeks pregnant at the time.

The health of the fetus is unknown. Munoz is believed to have been without oxygen for some time before her husband found her.

More in Local News

Mill Creek councilman no longer lives in city, panel finds

The Canvassing Board determined Sean Kelly is not eligible to vote there.

A Democrat and ex-Republican team up to end two-party politics

Brian Baird and Chris Vance unveil a new organization called Washington Independents.

The beavers weren’t happy, either, about Mill Creek flooding

A tree fell on their dam, sending a rush of water into a neighborhood near Jackson High School.

Two windsurfers rescued from Port Susan near Kayak Point

The men had failed to return to shore during Sunday’s windstorm.

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s best images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

Stranger offered candy to student walking home from school

The Granite Falls School District is warning families about… Continue reading

Coming together as family

Special-needs students and teachers at the Transition Center cooked up a Thanksgiving feast.

Lynnwood’s property tax promise to homeowners sort of true

They were told consolidation of fire departments would save, but new rates likely will be more.

Woman who died in 5-car crash identified

A car driven by Susan E. Sill rear-ended another vehicle Wednesday on Smokey Point Boulevard.

Most Read