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Abortion and Women's Health: SPUC releases new academic review on 50th anniversary of Abortion Act

27 October 2017


There is a 30% increased risk of depression and a 25% increased risk of anxiety following abortion

It reveals the "heart-breaking and horrific" impact of abortion on the health of women. 

Today, on the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Abortion Act, SPUC has released Abortion and Women's Health, an evidence-based review for medical professionals of the impact of abortion on women.

The fully referenced review is based on global research and lists a catalogue of physical and mental health problems linked to abortions. It was carried out by Dr Gregory Pike, a medical researcher and the Founding Director of the Adelaide Centre for Bioethics and Culture, and will be sent to GPs across the county.

Key findings from the review include:

  • women are more likely to die from any cause after abortion versus giving birth.

  • suicide is around six times greater after abortion than after childbirth.

  • abortion is associated with significantly higher death rates for women up to ten years after an abortion, compared with women who gave birth

  • women described significant grief three years after abortion.

  • a 30% increased risk of depression and a 25% increased risk of anxiety following abortion

  • women who had abortions experienced mental health disorders 30% more often compared to women who had not had an abortion.

  • depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder are also associated with the subsequent pregnancies of women who have had an abortion.

  • women who have had an abortion are at a higher risk of psychiatric admission compared to women who keep their babies.

  • women having medical abortions may experience hospital admission, blood transfusion, emergency room treatment, administration of IV antibiotics and infection.

Read the full report 

Launching the report, SPUC's Antonia Tully said:

"The pro-abortion lobby and the abortion industry, which make millions of pounds from the taxpayer for carrying out state-funded terminations, don’t seem to care about the impact of abortion on women or refuse to look at what that impact is. The reality is that the impact is both heart-breaking and horrific for so many women.

"We really do care that women who have an abortion experience mental health problems 30% more often compared with women who give birth. It matters greatly to us that the risk of suicide is approximately six times greater after an abortion than after childbirth."   

The release of the review also coincides with SPUC's mass constituency based lobby. Members up and down the country have been meeting with their MPs, urging them to oppose any moves to decriminalise abortion.  

News in brief:

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Comments (2)
  • Susan A

    27 October 2017, 10:47pm

    Why wasn't increased risk of breast cancer included in this study? I have heard reports of meta analysis studies that explain why this increase exists.

    Your comment has been submitted and is currently awaiting approval
  • SPUC

    30 October 2017, 3:14pm

    Hi Susan, the studies on breast-cancer are mentioned in the full report.

    Your comment has been submitted and is currently awaiting approval

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