Abortion remains one of the most sensitive issues in healthcare. It is a divisive issue that always makes it ways into national debate. According to WHO, every year in the world there are an estimated 40-50 million abortions yet the policy guidelines on this issue are ambivalent. While much of the focus is on the moral aspect of abortion, it is the impact of the practice on overall health that requires more spotlight. A cursory search for abortion research papers shows much attention is on the legality of the practice.
As the debate continues, research shows that 10% of women undergoing induced abortion suffer from immediate complications, of which one-fifth (20%) of these being major. This article seeks to shift focus to how abortion affects the overall health of the woman. Read on to find out more.
Physical Side Effects Following An Abortion
After an abortion some of the immediate expected side effects include:
- Abdominal pain and cramping
- Spotting and bleeding
The doctor should explain these side effects before commencing the procedure. In states where abortion is legal, the doctors examine the pregnant woman’s health history to determine if there are any risks before the procedure starts. Unfortunately, women undergoing abortions illegally have no such privilege and they don’t know about these risks.
Impact on Mental Health
The debate on the impact of abortion on a woman’s mental health continues. Those opposed to abortion argue that the practice affects the woman’s overall mental health and leads to increased risk of suicide and other psychological problems.
A survey published on the 2014 NEJM Journal shows that first-trimester abortion results in fewer self-reported depressive symptoms than near-limit abortion. A similar survey on Scandinavian women who aborted and those who delivered paints a grim picture.
Image 1:Before an abortion, a woman should know the risks involved
The survey published in the British Medical Journal Scandinavian women who aborted experienced a suicide rate of 34.9 per 1000, compared to a suicide rate of 5.9 per 1000 for women who delivered their babies. In most societies, abortion can lead to stigmatization leading to more problems for the woman.
Serious Complications Following An Abortion
Serious complications occur in fewer than 1 out of 100 first trimester abortions and 1 out of every 50 late term abortions. While the risks look low, it is important for pregnant women to learn about them and the impact they will have on their overall health. Some of these serious complications include:
- Heavy or persistent bleeding
- Damage to the cervix
- Anesthesia-related complications:
- Infection or sepsis
- Puncture/Tear of the wall of the uterus
- Cut or torn cervix
- Blood clots in the uterus
- Scar tissue on the uterine wall
- Damage to other organs
- Scarring of the uterine lining
- Placenta previa where the placenta blocks some or the entire cervix.
Other Long Term Effects Of Abortion
The impact of abortion on health goes beyond the physical and mental complications. Research shows there’s an increased risk of complications in future pregnancies, preterm birth due to weakened or damaged cervix, low birth weight, placenta problems, stillbirth, infertility among other issues.
These are only a few of the complications arising from abortion and it is important for women to know about them. Due to the politicization of the abortion debate, there’s a great risk of more women going ahead with abortion without learning how it will impact their lives. By learning everything about the medical procedure, women can make informed choices.
If you have a research paper on abortion, these are only a few of the ideas you can use to develop your argument. You can find more research materials and samples from online writing services such as acemypaper.