Texas law is preventing a woman's family from honoring her wishes and removing her from life support because she is pregnant.
Marlise Munoz was 14 weeks pregnant when her husband Erick found her unconscious and not breathing on the kitchen floor. A firefighter and paramedic, Erick immediately called 911 and performed CPR, but she never regained consciousness.
Erick told WFAA News that he thought he could be faced with an agonizing choice - whether to honor Marlise's wishes about life support, or have her put on life support and potentially save his unborn child. However, that choice was taken out of the family's hands by Texas law.
She is now 18 weeks pregnant and still unresponsive.
Marlise made her wishes clear to her family after her brother died in an accident. She told her husband and her mother, Lynne Machado, that she did not ever want to be kept alive on a life support machine.
But Texas law overrides women's wishes when they are pregnant: "Section 166.049 Pregnant Patients. A person may not withdraw or withhold life-sustaining treatment under this subchapter from a pregnant patient."
Erick says no one knows if the baby is still viable, since it's not known how long the baby was without oxygen. "I don't know how long she was there prior to me finding her. All I know is that she was without oxygen long enough for her to have massive brain swelling. I unfortunately know what that type of damage could do to a child during crucial developmental time," he wrote on WFAA's Facebook page.
The family has been attacked on Facebook and Marlise's mom has responded to some of the critics. "Please remember...that Marlise was only 14 weeks into her pregnancy. We were told the fetus weighed 4-5 ounces. This is a crucial time for growth and development. Being without blood flow and oxygen for well over an hour has to had an effect on the fetus."
The family say they simply want to make other Texans aware of the law, which few people know about.
Doctors have said they may keep Marlise on life support until the baby can be delivered.