15th Study Links Abortion and Substance Abuse

Women who have an abortion are five times more likely to report subsequent substance abuse compared to women who carry to term, according to a study published in the latest issue of the American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse.

The study was authored by Elliot Institute director Dr. David Reardon and Dr. Philip Ney, a British Columbia psychiatrist who specializes in post-abortion counseling. This is at least the 15th published study connecting abortion to subsequent drug or alcohol abuse.

This latest study was drawn from a national reproductive history survey of a random sample of 700 women, from 24 to 44 years of age. “Even if we assume the lowest statistical range for the relative risk, our results would indicate that there are between 150,000 and 500,000 new cases of abortion-related substance abuse per year,” Reardon said.

Ney notes that these findings are especially disturbing since substance abuse is a leading cause of neonatal death and malformation in subsequent planned pregnancies.

“I have found that women with unresolved grief or trauma related to a prior abortion are more likely to feel anxiety, fear, and depression during subsequent pregnancies,” Ney said. “If they are unable to legally obtain mood-altering drugs with a prescription, many of these women resort to alcohol or illegal drugs as a means of suppressing unwanted feelings about their past abortions.”

Ney’s clinical experience treating women is confirmed by several published studies that have documented higher rates of drug and alcohol abuse among pregnant women who have a history of abortion. However, substance abuse appears to be just one of several self-destructive tendencies related to abortion.

A recent major study of death certificates and government medical records in Finland has shown that the risk of death from suicide is six times higher for women who have had an abortion compared to women who gave birth. The researchers also found that the risk of dying from accidents and homicide was four and twelve times higher, respectively.

The increase in accidental or homicide-related deaths among post-abortive women is most likely due to risk-taking behavior that masks self-destructive or suicidal tendencies. It is still unclear whether abortion causes self-destructive behavior or whether it simply aggravates previously existing self-destructive tendencies, but the researchers believe that both of these factors are involved.

“Clearly, women with a propensity to risk-taking are more likely to become pregnant and perhaps more likely to choose abortion,” Reardon said. “In such cases, while abortion may not be the underlying cause of their problems, it may contribute to their psychological deterioration. On the other hand, it is also clear that some women who were not previously self-destructive have become so as a direct result of their traumatic abortion experiences. At this time, however, we have no way of knowing how many women fall into each of these two categories.”

While many proponents of abortion dispute a causal link between abortion and substance abuse, Ney insists that his own experience in successfully treating abortion trauma proves that this connection is far more than a statistical fluke.

“I have treated women with a long history of self-destructive behavior who have had only made progress in overcoming these tendencies after they have completed counseling for abortion trauma,” Ney said. “Many other therapists have had the same experience. Consistently good results can only come from the right diagnosis and the right treatment.”

Originally printed in The Post-Abortion Review, 8(1), Jan.-March 2000. Copyright 2000, Elliot Institute.

Elliot Institute, PO Box 7348, Springfield, IL 62791-73480.
Additional material is posted at www.afterabortion.org

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Abortion Risks Outlined by Clinics

Author: Womancare Services, Inc.

Responding to a new Arizona law providing women with informed consent before an abortion, two Phoenix abortion clinics list many risks of the procedure, including post abortion syndrome and infection of the uterus.

The new law, signed July 13, 2009, states that women seeking an abortion must undergo counseling 24 hours in advance of the procedure, and that parental consent for minors be obtained. (A 1995 Illinois law affecting Chicago, Cicero, Berwyn and all other areas in Illinois that required parental notification, was halted when a Cook County Circuit Court judge issued a temporary restraining order Nov. 4, 2009.)

The CamelBack Family Planning Center of Arizona posts an online informed consent form which lists these possible complications during the abortion: laceration of the cervix, perforation or injury to the uterus, hemorrhage, reaction to anesthesia and/or medications resulting in shock, convulsions, and death.

It also lists as possible after-effects: post-abortion syndrome, incomplete abortion, continuing pregnancy, infection of the uterus, hemorrhage after the abortion, and emotional problems.

Stages of Fetus Listed

Another consent form on the website bullet-points the developing fetus at six stages, from week 5 after conception to 16 weeks after. Week 6 states in part, “The head has formed and buds begin to grow at the limbs for legs and arms. The heart and lungs are the first organs to form, and by the 25th day the heart will have electrical activity.”

Another abortion clinic in Phoenix, Family Planning Associates, carries various consent forms as well.

Thirty-four states require that women receive counseling before an abortion is performed, according to theGuttmacher Institute, the research arm of Planned Parenthood. Twenty-three of these states detail the information a woman must be given.

Arizona was one of the first of five states who, beginning in 1999, required providers to perform an ultrasound on at least some women seeking an abortion and then offer them the option to view the image, according toGuttmacher.

Women in Berwyn, Cicero, Stickney, N. Riverside, Forest Park, Maywood and other nearby suburbs in the western Chicago, IL area who need more information about abortion procedures and the short and long-term effects should call WomanCare Services, at 708-795-6000. Or go to www.womancare.org.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/womens-health-articles/abortion-risks-outlined-by-clinics-1637251.html

About the Author

Women in Berwyn, Oak Park, Stickney, LaGrange, Cicero, Westchester, and nearby towns who think they might be pregnant should call WomanCare Services in Berwyn, IL. WomanCare Services offers help to women facing unintended pregnancies in the near southwest Chicago area. Go to WomanCare Services. Or call 708-795-6000.


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Abortion Causes Trauma, Expert Testifies

Author: Womancare Services, Inc.

Although many women believe that abortion is safer than childbirth, the trauma among women who undergo an abortion appears to be a sleeping giant that won’t go away, according to a researcher who testified before a state senate committee.

Moodiness, sudden and uncontrollable crying episodes, and low self-esteem are some of the woes suffered by women who have had abortions, as reported in testimony before the Wisconsin State Senate last year over a bill that would ensure that abortion remain legal in Wisconsin if Roe v. Wade were overturned. Roe v. Wade is the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion.

In the weeks leading up to the bill’s failure in March 2008, the Senate heard from various opponents of S.B. 398. None perhaps was more compelling than that of a practicing psychotherapist with over 30 years of specialization in the treatment of trauma and grief associated with induced abortion.

“Now with over three decades of legal abortion,” said Vincent M. Rue, co-director of the Institute for Pregnancy Loss in Jacksonville, FL, “the scientific evidence is increasingly clear that abortion places women’s mental health at risk, even for those who have never had mental health problems previously.”

Rue cited several studies, one of which was a large study of women in California, in which women who had abortions made 63more claims of psychiatric problems within 90 days after pregnancy resolution than women who delivered their babies.

Planned Parenthood, on the other hand, calls post-abortion syndrome a “false idea.” The debate about the syndrome also entered national politics during last year’s presidential election.

Attention to Post Abortion Syndrome Diverted

Post-partum blues are well known, but when it comes to mental health after an abortion, much of the national attention has centered on a woman’s “right to choose” rather than the emotional after-effects that many women experience.

Women in Berwyn, Cicero, N. Riverside and other western Chicago suburbs should learn about the possible emotional consequences of abortion by contacting WomanCare Services.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/womens-health-articles/abortion-causes-trauma-expert-testifies-1479666.html

About the Author

Women in Berwyn, Cicero, N. Riverside and other western Chicago suburbs should learn about the possible emotional consequences of abortion by calling WomanCare Services in Berwyn, IL. WomanCare Services offers help to women facing unintended pregnancies in the near southwest Chicago area. Go to WomanCare Services. Or call 708-795-6000

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