Abortion isn’t just one thing, it depends on when in the gestation the pregnancy is terminated. As you probably know human gestation is broken into three trimesters of about 12 to 14 weeks, and each trimester presents different risks to the mother, but overall abortion is not risky. According to a study from Obstetrics and Gynecology comparing risk of dying from abortion versus dying from giving birth found childbirth is 14.7-times more dangerous.
Risk Of Death
The risk of death from abortion is about point-zero zero zero seven percent. According to a study in the journal Contraception this is similar to plastic surgery, dental procedures, or the number of running deaths during marathons. Another study followed 54,000 women who had abortions to track any post-abortion hospital visits, and found only zero-point-eight-seven percent of women visited the ER within six weeks after the procedure which is great news, because half of all women in the U.S., or roughly one out of every four people in this country, will have this procedure!
It’s done so often that of 170,000 procedures studied by the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine only zero point eight five percent of procedures: required “re-aspiration,” experienced a cervical tear, or got a mild infection. None of those, by the way, require a hospital to treat hospitalization incidence was only point zero seven percent. But there are different kinds of risks for different procedures. Ninety-seven percent of abortions in the first trimester are done using vacuum aspiration. Don’t picture your floor vacuum at home, it’s not like that at all. Instead, picture a doctor pulling back on a syringe. Of the remaining three percent, some are done with drugs called a medical abortion.
Basically, a pill tells the lining of the uterus it’s time to shed, and the fetus is carried along with it. With these the risks are mild, mainly infections, bleeding, cramps, diarrhea, and such. But, there are also surgical abortions, where dilation and evacuation takes place. These are usually done in the second trimester, and the risks are greater, but still mild. Here, again, doctors are mostly concerned about infections, perforating the uterus, or uncontrolled bleeding, all of which are pretty rare.
Abortions do carry a small risk for future pregnancies. A 2003 study of thousands of women found there was a slight miscarriage increase of around 2 percent, but overall, the risk was incredibly low. By comparison, smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of miscarriage by 11 percent. The major problems abortion patients should worry about is sepsis.
Basically, the aspiration doesn’t get all the fetal and placental tissue, which may become infected as the immune system attacks it and if women have multiple abortions, the risks of abnormal placental movement in future pregnancies increases. Although, remember, both of these fall under the overall low risk of hospitalization and mortality. Each year in the U.S. at least 700,000 women will seek an abortion. In a charged political climate, there will always be a philosophical debate. But numerous scientific studies have proven that the risk is low to the mother, as long as it’s done by a medical professional.