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Negative Effects of Abortion, Essay Example

Pages: 1

Words: 1371

Essay

Outline

Introduction

Biological Implications

Social Impacts of Abortion

Psychological Impacts of Abortion

Conclusion

Abstract

The abortion has had its fair share of criticisms from religious leaders; women who feel demoralized by prochoice supporter and still offended with the prolife defenders. It then becomes a crazy mixed up fallacy regarding the true impacts of abortion on society, individuals and families across the world. This presentation will embrace some of the adverse effects of abortion and how they have transcend time as contentions continue regarding abortion funding within the society.

Introduction

No one can doubt that abortion has been practiced among cultures for centuries. To elaborate on its adverse effects without scrutinizing its history would be encouraging a subjective assessment of the true impacts on society. Therefore, in reflecting it must be noted that women in the caliber Madame Restell and Ann Lohman paid a price centuries ago for the illegality and villainous connotations of illegal abortion across the world. These women smuggled abortion pills for over 40 years internationally. They were arrested, charged and stood trial for these crimes. Madame Restell, eventually, committed suicide before facing her final trial scheduled for April 1st 1898 (Gordon, 2006).

However, in 1964 the Freedom of Choice Act was passed at 110th United States Congress.  This confirmed the fundamental right of choice for every woman in the United States of America ‘to bear a child; terminate a pregnancy prior to fetal viability; or terminate a pregnancy after viability when necessary to protect her life or her health’ (American Center for Law and Justice, 2007). It also was interpreted to be as a policy regulation of the United States of America government.

Even though this law was passed so many years ago and the practice of abortion has now become legal it is not without its effects. Arguments have been that because it was illegal and women sought nonprofessional help this created the adversity. Research has shown where even with legalizing abortions; abortion counseling and clinics the action has immense adverse effects on individuals and society as a whole.

Biological Implications

In discussing the biological side effects of abortion it is imperative to briefly examine procedures contained in the practice. It must be understood that there are mainly two types of abortions; induced and spontaneous. Pro-life/pro-choice activists are more concerned with the legality of induced abortions. Induced abortions can be done surgically when women visit an obstetrician and he/she removes the fetus either through suctioning by dilation and curettage or induction through an oxytocic infusion.

Medical induction occurs when women are given oral abortifacients to initiate uterine contractions to expel the products of conception. Spontaneous abortion occurs in cases when women have an incompetent cervix or defective uterine product. Due to this dysfunction the products of conception are expelled without any outside infiltration. It is my opinion that whether it is induced or spontaneous there are serious repercussions emerging from abortions biologically.

In cases of induced abortions, especially, through suctioning/dilatation and curettage the incidence of infection is very high. Studies conducted by Achilles and Reeves (2011) show where upper vaginal tract infection was another serious biological effect of abortion which can lead to salpingitis, pelvic inflammatory disease, sterility and death. The researchers contend that legalizing abortion has dropped the existing rate by 1%, but it is still a cause for concern (Achilles & Reeves, 2011).

Also, Dr Michael Greene (2005) reporting in the New England Journal of Medicine indicated that abortifacients initiate incomplete abortions causing deaths of women in Canada, America and Europe. The drug named in the study was Mifepristone associated with Clostridium sordellii as the causative infecting organism (Greene, 2005).

Other reports have been that persistent suctioning of the uterine cavity can lead to dysfunctional uterine action during labor, perforation of the uterus, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, ectopic pregnancies and incompetent cervix preventing the woman from carrying a pregnancy to term (Cheng, 2008).

Social Impacts of Abortion

The issue of abortion is as divisive as immigration in the American society. There are immense socio-economic and political implications regarding how women are perceived who contemplate and have had abortions as well as the way health care reflects acceptance of Freedom of Choice Act legalizing the procedure.

Studies conducted evaluating the social impacts of aborting among psychiatric patients who were approved as against those refused revealed that abortion was not the answer to many social ills in the society. Precisely, after care for abortion is costly and the process affects women negatively. Importantly, a South African study was conducted on women seeking abortion due to psychiatric issues comparing the outcome of women who were refused with women who were granted abortion privileges.  The follow up period was 12-18 months (Drower & Nash, 2000).

Women who were granted abortions needed more psychiatric treatment than those who were refused. More so they were admitted due to increased alcohol, tobacco, or tranquilizer consumption. They also experienced adverse personality changes; social isolation incidences and were relatively more dysfunctional than women whose abortions were not approved. The women who were not approved had their babies (Drower & Nash, 2000). The social costs of approving the procedure have its adverse effects.

Other studies have shown where changes occur in women who have had abortion with regards to their religious beliefs. They attend church less frequently after abortion than before. Some revealed that they felt alienated from God after an abortion. In terms of perception women who carried their pregnancies to term were generally more accepted by religious groups than those who did not (Drower & Nash, 2000).

Psychological Impacts of Abortion

This section of the discussion will highlight adverse psychological effects of abortion on women and their families. Most of these adversities emerge from the social and biological tragedies abortion brings to the life of a woman and her immediate environment. For example, the psychological impact may not be realized soon after the abortion. However, if that abortion ends in infection whereby the woman becomes sterile; then the psychological impact would be long lasting.

Studies reveal that the psychological effects of abortion can be so devastating for some women it becomes difficult for them to conceive again; live a normal life and accept children as part of their normal habitat. Further, this post-abortion study confirmed that only 8 weeks after their abortion ‘44% complained of nervous disorders; 36% had experienced sleep disturbances, 31% had regrets about their decision, and 11% had been prescribed psychotropic medicine by their family doctor (Ashton, 2000).

Likewise, a 5 year retrospective study in two Canadian provinces confirmed that there was a significantly greater need for medical and psychiatric care among women who had abortions. Precisely, 25% of them made visits to psychiatrists as compared to 3% of the control group.  Conclusions supported previous studies regarding social costs of abortions to advance that women who had abortions were more likely to require subsequent admission to a psychiatric hospital. The high risk group was identified as teenagers, separated or divorced women, and those with a history of more than one abortion (Ashton, 2000).

Conclusion

The foregoing presentation embraced a solid discussion of the adverse effects of abortion. This issue was approached from the assumption that these adversities appear in a package of biological, social and psychological impacts; they sequel each other in a variety of ways. Even at an age in women’s history when abortion has been legalized in many societies across the world still abortion is stigmatized in small social settings.

These are religious and interest groups. Notwithstanding the legality of abortion there are serious side effects, which cannot be overlooked. They include infection, sterility, infertility, death, increased costs of care; social alienation, psychiatric disorders; hospitalization and living a life saturated with remorse and guilt.

References

Achilles, L., & Reeves, F. (2011). Prevention of infection after induced abortion. Contraception. 83(4):295-309

American Center for Law and Justice (2007). Executive Summary of the Freedom of Choice Act. ACLJ.

Ashton, A. (2000).  The Psychosocial Outcome of Induced Abortion. British Journal of Ob&Gyn., 87,1115-1122.

Cheng, L. (2008). Surgical versus medical methods for second-trimester induced abortion. The WHO Reproductive Health Library. World Health Organization.

Drower, S., & Nash, S. (2000). Therapeutic Abortion on Psychiatric Grounds. South Africa Medical Journal, 54:604-608.

Greene, M. (2005). Fatal Infections Associated with Mifepristone-Induced Abortion. N Engl J Med, 5(353), 2317-231

Gordon, S. (2006). Law and Everyday Death: Infanticide and the Backlash against Woman’s Rights after the Civil War. Lives of the Law. (Austin Sarat, Lawrence Douglas, and Martha Umphrey Editors). University of Michigan Press

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