5 Facts You Should Know About Abortion Safety

The Mississippi legislature banned abortions at 15 weeks. Kentucky is about to do†the same at 13 weeks. Meanwhile, Ohio is trying to make abortion completely illegal from the moment of conception.

Despite†more than 40 years of legalized abortion,†abortion opponents†are fighting even more zealously to prevent pregnancy termination — regardless of the pending circumstances surrounding the birth.

And even though the†right†claims that†abortion is a dangerous and medically unnecessary procedure, study after study proves them wrong. Here are five things that you should know about abortion — all supported by the latest medical studies:

1. Abortion is extremely safe.

As†NPR News†reports:

Abortions in the United States are safe and have few complications, according to a landmark new study by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine. “I would say the main takeaway is that abortions that are provided in the United States are safe and effective,” says Ned Calonge, the co-chair of the committee that wrote the study. He is an associate professor of family medicine and epidemiology at the University of Colorado and CEO of The Colorado Trust.

2. Abortion does not need to be performed in a special surgical centers

According to†Science Daily:

The vast majority of abortions can be provided safely in office-based settings, the report says. In 2014, 95 percent of abortions were provided in clinics and other office-based settings. For any outpatient procedure, including abortion, the important safeguards are whether the facility has the appropriate equipment, personnel, and an emergency transfer plan to address complications that might occur. The committee found no evidence indicating that clinicians who perform abortions require hospital privileges to ensure a safe outcome for the patient.

3. Abortion does not cause breast cancer or mental health issues

The L.A. Times reports:

For women who decide to give birth after already having had two or more abortions, there was some increased risk of a preterm birth before 28 weeks. For women with no abortion history, the rate of such preterm births was 3 per 1,000 births. For women who’d had two abortions, the rate rose to 6 per 1,000 births and for women who had had three or more abortions, the rate rose to 11 per 1,000 births.†But the scientists did not find substance in claims that having an abortion raised the risk of breast cancer, mental health disorders and other issues.

4. Abortion restrictions pose the largest safety risk

According to the†authors of the†National Academies study:

The quality of abortion care depends on where a woman lives. In many states, regulations have created barriers to safe, effective, patient-centered, timely, efficient, and equitable abortion services. The regulations often prohibit qualified providers from providing services, misinform women of the risks of the procedures they are considering, overrule womenís and clinicianís medical decision making, or require medically unnecessary services and delays in care.

5. Restricting legal abortion doesn’t bring down the rate of abortion.

U.S. News and World Reports†reports:

In countries with the fewest restrictions, only 1% of abortions were the ‘least safe’ kind from 2010 to 2014. That number jumps to 31% in the most restrictive countries, according to the report, released Tuesday by the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive rights think tank.

The data show that, while stricter abortion laws do not lead to fewer abortions, preventing unwanted pregnancies has a significant effect on reducing the number of terminations. In countries where laws permit abortion only to save the life of the mother, the abortion rate is higher at 37 per 1,000 women than the rate of 34 abortions per 1,000 in countries without such restrictions.

Photo credit: Robin Marty, via Flickr

75 comments

Marie W
Marie W9 days ago

Thanks!!

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Sarah Hill
Sarah Hill5 months ago

Abortion is never safe for the baby!

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Carl R
Carl R5 months ago

Thanks!!

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Karen H
Karen H5 months ago

Elizabeth K, you do know that many hospitals won't tie a woman's tubes because it's against their religion, right? Their god evidently wants them to "go forth and multiply", so no contraception, no tube tying, and no abortion. Don't have sex? Unrealistic. We need comprehensive sex education and access to free or low-cost contraception. I worked at a family planning clinic, and couldn't believe some of the things our patients believed! Like you can't get pregnant if you douche with aluminum foil after sex. (Ouch!) Politicians aren't much better educated. In 2015, Idaho state Rep. Vito Barbieri got a lesson on female anatomy after asking if a woman can swallow a small camera for doctors to conduct a remote gynecological exam! And Rep Todd Akin of Missouri believed women's bodies can block an unwanted pregnancy in instances of "legitimate rape." This is why there are unwanted pregnancies, and this is why we need comprehensive sex education. Ruth S, there are thousands of children in orphanages and foster care, yet I don't see the holier-than-thou group taking any of them in. Our lawmakers don't want women having abortions because they must "protect life", yet protecting our children from mass shootings in schools obviously isn't on their agenda.

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Leanne K
Leanne K5 months ago

I am pro abortion. I think its sad when abortions are performed late in a pregnancy but that is a decision for the woman. I know two women who had abortions at the five month mark. Awful. But both were heroin addicts. I dont know why they didnt access free abortion, my guess would be that they were too preoccupied getting the mobey to fund their addiction - I say their because both supported their partners addiction as well as their own. That of course meant a private specialist and required payment. That payment was eventually forfeited. Idiots yes but what is the alternative. Every alternative is sad. The third case involved a disabled baby and a very young mother who was suicidal. That was at the eight month mark. Horrid but it was a decision determined by the doctors abd the patient. I believe that is the best way because there are some awful and tragic stories that we are not always privy to, such as incest. Lets be realistic, there have been cases where the one man is the father, the grandfather and the great grandfather. Not inly did he rape his daughter, he raped the daughter he fathered to his daughter. To abort is her decision!

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Angela J
Angela J5 months ago

Thanks

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Chad A
Chad A5 months ago

Women need to be treated as people, with control over their bodies in a moral context of informed medical consent.

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Freya H
Freya H5 months ago

Way to go, Pam W and Amanda M! Strip away the sheep's clothing from those forked- tongued, mealy-mouthed hypocrites. Ruth, Elizabeth, and all the other anti-choice creeps have zero concern for life AFTER birth, unless it's their own or of people who agree with them.

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Leo Custer
Leo C5 months ago

Thank you for Sharing

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pam w
pam w5 months ago

Elizabeth K...let me educate you. Yes, I work at Planned Parenthood, so I'm obviously not going to agree with your cruel and ignorant comments. We had a patient who came in with her husband and 1-year-old son. She was pregnant again (''OLD WIVES' TALE...you can't get pregnant while breast feeding." WRONG!) So, she had an abortion, had an IUD inserted and went back to her life. Six months later...she was back. The IUD had failed! (Oh, yes..it happens.) So, according to your philosophy, she and her husband should just be celibate? AS IF...


Women get pregnant because of three failures...1. Contraceptives can fail us. YES, THEY DO! 2. Men can fail us. YES, THEY DO! 3. We can fail ourselves. YES, WE DO! None of these is a reason to punish someone with unwanted motherhood.



Amanda's right...there are thousands of children ''in the system,'' and many will remain there through childhood. Want that life? I didn't think so. How many unwanted children have you adopted, Ruth? How many do you foster? How would you like me to tell you what to do with your body? A fetus is NOT a ''baby.'' It might (or might not) develop into one but it will never be considered a child until it's born. Period.

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