Can I accept medical treatment that will obstruct my fertility?


Full Question

Due to medical problems, my doctor wants me to undergo a procedure that will stop my menstruation. If this procedure is unsuccessful, a hysterectomy or high doses of birth control pills will be necessary. Can I follow my doctor's advice?

Answer

You can follow your doctor’s advice. Legitimate medical procedures and medications necessary for healing the body are not at odds with Church teaching. In his encyclical Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI stated: "[T]he Church does not consider at all illicit the use of those therapeutic means necessary to cure bodily diseases, even if a foreseeable impediment to procreation should result there from—provided such impediment is not directly intended for any motive whatsoever" (HV 15).


Jim Blackburn