Abortion: 'Safe & Legal'?

 1992 Diane S. Dew in The Standard

Abortion, though legal, is an unnatural "choice." It can also be dangerous. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 500 women die daily from abortion.

   The most common causes of maternal death from abortion in the US are hemorrhage, infection, pulmonary embolism (blood clot to the lung), complications of anesthesia, and cardiomyopathy, according to a report issued July 1991 by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

     Other physical complications may occur, including: shock, brain damage, septicemia, cerebral embolism (blood clot to the brain), cardiac embolism (blood clot to the heart), etc.

     Abortions account for 4.7% of all maternal deaths in pregnancy in the US, the report, published by the US Department of Health and Human Services, indicates.

     Even of those who survive abortion, women have been left comatose, paralyzed or sterile.

     Further, the CDC report states that the routine vital statistics utilized in gathering information for the study, severely "understate maternal mortality ratios." Death certificates, for example, often do not specify "abortion" as a cause of death, but generalize, citing secondary complications such as "hemorrhage," "infection," etc., which occurred as a direct result of abortion.

     According to the report: "Studies have shown that maternal deaths that were not identified by vital statistics varied from almost 18% in New York City ... to 150% in North Carolina for 1988-1989." (See "Enhanced maternal mortality surveillance -- North Carolina, 1988 and 1989," CDC, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 1991; Vol. 40, No. 469-71.)

     Consequently, "recent national vital statistics reports have attributed greater than 40% of all maternal deaths to 'other' causes," according to the July 1991 report.

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