An important meta-analysis published today in the prestigious British Journal of Psychiatry demonstrates that nearly 10% of mental health problems in women are directly attributable to abortion. "Abortion and mental health: quantitative synthesis and analysis of research published 1995-2009," by Priscilla Coleman of Bowling Green University, shows that women with an abortion history have an 81% increased risk of mental health problems and 155% increased risk of suicide. This meta-analysis combines 22 studies of 877,181 women, 163, 831 of whom have had abortions. A meta-analysis is an especially powerful type of study because it includes a large number of subjects, and by combining studies is much more reliable than a single study.
This review, which is larger than any study to date, contradicts the recent and biased and less systematic review by the American Psychological Association, which fails to find a relationship between mental health problems and abortion. The new meta-analysis also contradicts the stance of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), which has been silent on the mental health impact of abortion in its official publications despite overwhelming evidence over the last two decades of abortion's adverse effects.
The egregious cover-up of abortion complications is an aspect of "the abortion distortion." Elites in charge of professional organizations actively suppress legitimate research on the harms of induced abortion because of political bias or worse. One of the most notorious examples of "the abortion distortion" was the revelation that Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan actually wrote part of ACOG's position statement on partial birth abortion while working as deputy assistant for domestic policy for Bill Clinton.
This new review in a prestigious psychiatry journal sheds important light on the mental health of women. For example, South Korea not only has had a major increase in suicide but also holds the world record for the highest rate of female suicide. This country is also called "the abortion paradise" because at least 43.7% of pregnancies end in abortion. Suicide of young women is also a significant public health problem in China, which compounds the harmful psychological impact of abortion by governmental policy of forced abortion. The most sobering finding in the Coleman review is found in the section on "Population Attributable Risk," (PAR), in which the PAR for suicide was found to be 34.9%. PAR estimates the proportion of deaths in an entire population that could be prevented if the cause of death is eliminated (in this case abortion as the cause of suicide in women). By so powerfully linking abortion to mental health problems, the Coleman study helps us comprehend the magnitude of the damage done to entire nations by reckless, permissive abortion policies.
Mary L Davenport, MD, FACOG, is President, American Association of ProLife Obstetricians and Gynecologists www.aaplog.,org and Medical Director, Magnificat Maternal Health Program, www.mmhp.org