Wow. I'd put off reading Elizabeth Weil's NYT Magazine article about the emerging concept of wrongful birth, but now I'm glad I did. It does a pretty great job of laying out the emotional, moral, ethical, and medical issues that arise from increases in prenatal testing--especially PGD and other genetic tests that can screen for potentially serious diseases or disabilities.
The gist is that a lot of doctors and hospital genetics counsellors--and some parents--are operating on the assumption that prenatal testing is for helping decide to terminate a potentially problematic pregnancy. Whatever your views on abortion, it's easy to see where this gets hairy: around the question of what's "problematic." Down Syndrome? Deafness? Tay-Sachs? Anencephaly? Abstracted moral principles quickly become specific, individual circumstances, and the information that people have to make decisions and recommendations is usually incomplete at best.
For all the presumed precision of science, it's a reminder that pregnancy still involves a lot of unpredictability and uncertainty.
A Wrongful Birth? [nytmag]
Previously: yeah, this article's been written before, but not as well.