All praise be to Allah Alone, and peace and blessings be upon the Last of the Prophets.
The Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta' has studied the question submitted to His Honor the Grand Mufty by the General Manager of the Department of the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Awkaf, Daw`ah, and Guidance in
no. 23/1/724 dated 22/8/1417 A.H. Along with the information given concerning the case of the woman whose fetus has not developed a head. The case included a question about
the ruling on aborting the fetus before it completes its full term
based on of the mentioned findings. The question was referred to the General Secretariat of the Council of Senior Scholars no. 4754 on 29/8/1417 A.H. The Committee studied the case and reviewed the medical report, which is signed by a number of doctors, related to the mentioned pregnancy, and it reads as follows:
Name: F. `A. M. A.
(Part No. 21; Page No. 448)
Age: 28 years old.
File no.: (--).
This patient is in the seventh month of her pregnancy. She has three living daughters, the youngest of whom is two years old. The expected term for her delivery is 5/10/1417 A.H. All of her lab examinations are sound. There is no other disease accompanying her pregnancy. When she visited the out-patient clinic for the first time to investigate her pregnancy on 7/7/1417 A.H., the fetus was diagnosed through ultrasound and regular rays. These tests showed the fetus had no head but was still alive. It is medically known in such cases that the fetus either dies inside the womb, or dies directly after birth because the growth of the brain will not be complete.
Nevertheless, the mother's life is not endangered because of pregnancy until delivery. The mother's status remains stable and there are no current or expected complications if the fetus remains alive inside the womb until delivery.
Having examined the case in question, the Committee gave the following answer: It is not permissible to abort the fetus at this stage, especially as the medical authority has decided that (Part No. 21; Page No. 449) there is no danger on the life of the mother if pregnancy continues, and she may deliver the child naturally after completion of the full term of pregnancy.As for the fact that the fetus has the congenital absence of a head and that it will not live after birth, these are not Shar`y (Islamic legal) excuses for inducing abortion. The end result may be otherwise, for Allah may complete the formation of the fetus during the remaining stages of gestation. Indeed, Allah is Capable of all things.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.