THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF PROLIFE OBSTETRICIANS AND GYNECOLOGISTS ABORTION AND NATURAL CAUSE MORTALITY This discussion of “Abortion Complications” will deal with “natural cause” mortality, which includes mainly death from cancer, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease, and HIV aids. “Natural cause mortality” is to be distinguished from other mortality “complications” noted on this website section, namely suicide, accidents, and homicide. Two studies will be examined. The first is a 14 year study of all the women with a pregnancy event in Finland from 1987 to 2000. (Gissler, M.,, Pregnancy-associated mortality after birth, spontaneous abortion, or induced abortion in Finland, l987-2000., American J. ObGyn (2004)190, 422-7) This study included 1,141,269 pregnancies (865,988 births, 156,789 abortions, 118,490 miscarriages) [76%, 13.7%, 10.3%, respectively]. The study looked at all deaths of women age 15-49, and selected for study all deaths during pregnancy and within one year of pregnancy termination (by delivery, miscarriage, or induced abortion). These are also compared with non-pregnant age matched women, as part of the study design. We know from Gissler’s previous 7 year study of 620,000 pregnancy events (Gissler, M,, “Pregnancy associated deaths in Finland 1987-1994, Acta Obsetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica (1997) 76:651-657) that women who chose abortion had a suicide rate 6X higher, accident rate 4X higher, and homicide rate 10X higher, than women who chose to deliver. In this 14 year study of over 1.2 million pregnancy events, women who chose to abort their pregnancy died of ALL CAUSES combined (disease, suicide, accident, homicide) at a rate 3X higher than women who chose to deliver. DELIVERED WOMEN’S ALL CAUSE MORTALITY RATE IS 28/1OO,000 ABORTED WOMEN’S ALL CAUSE MORTALITY RATE IS 83/100,000 TAKE HOME MESSAGE FROM THIS 14 YEAR STUDY: IN FINLAND, YOUR CHANCE OF DYING OF “ALL CAUSES” DURING PREGNANCY AND IN THE YEAR FOLLOWING PREGNANCY, IS THREE TIMES HIGHER IF YOU CHOOSE TO ABORT THAN IF YOU CHOSE TO DELIVER YOUR BABY. In this data set, the authors excluded all deaths by violent causes, such as suicide (6X higher than delivered women), homicide (10X higher), and accidents (4X higher). Causes of “natural death’ in the remaining women included breast, brain, and genital tract cancers, melanoma,, and diseases of circulatory system. Please note that these women are relatively young to be dying of natural causes, especially in this window of time (pregnancy plus one year following delivery or abortion). They are all in the reproductive age range. DEATH FROM “NATURAL” CAUSES for women with a pregnancy event: Death rate for women who chose to carry and deliver the baby was 16.3/100,000 Death rate for women who chose induced abortion was 22.3/100,000 A SECOND TAKE HOME MESSAGE FROM THIS STUDY: IN FINLAND, YOUR CHANCE OF DYING FROM NATURAL CAUSES DURING PREGNANCY, AND IN THE YEAR FOLLOWING PREGNANCY, IS 37% HIGHER IF YOU CHOOSE TO ABORT THAN IF YOU CHOOSE TO DELIVER YOUR BABY. The data from the following study (Reardon,, Deaths Associated With Pregnancy Outcome; Southern Medical Journal, Vol 95, No 8, August 2002) examines a population from the Los Angeles area, far removed from Finland in climate and culture. Yet the results are strikingly similar. This study involved 173,279 patients, and covered an 8 year period, 1989 to 1997. The data show that the increased death rates for women who had abortions vs women who delivered were observed throughout the 8 years examined. Violent deaths predominated earlier in this period, natural deaths predominated later in this period. During this 8 year period, from the Los Angeles area, comparing women with induced abortion vs women who delivered: “All cause” mortality 1.6 times higher (in Finland, 3X higher in preg + one year following induced abortion) Suicide mortality 3.1 times higher (in Finland, 6X higher in the year following induced abortion) “Accident” mortality: 1.8 times higher (in Finland, 4X higher in the year following induced abortion) This may reflect the known post abortion effect of higher alcohol and drug use, and higher risk taking, angry, self destructive behavior. “Natural cause” mortality: 1.4 times higher (In Finland, 1.37X higher in preg + one year following induced abortion) Causes of death, compared to controls: AIDS is 2.2 times higher, cardiovascular disease 2.9 times higher, cerebrovascular disease 5.5 times higher) ALTHOUGH THESE STUDIES EACH HAVE A DIFFERENT DESIGN, NOTE THE STRIKING SIMILARITY IN LONG TERM COMPLICATION RISK INCREASE, INCLUDING AN ALMOST IDENTICAL INCREASE IN NATURAL CAUSE MORTALITY FOR THOSE WHO CHOSE TO ABORT THEIR PREGNANCY, WHEN COMPARED TO THOSE WHO CHOSE TO CARRY AND DELIVER THEIR BABY. THE QUESTION MUST ARISE: What is there about elective abortion that is associated with an increase in “all cause” and “violent cause” mortality? And, that is associated with a marked increase in suicide? Severe relational stress may contribute to the homicide increase. Guilt and depression surely contribute to the suicide increase. Substance abuse life style may well contribute to the fatal accident increase (and some of these fatal accidents may well be suicides). But what about the “natural cause”mortality increase? What is there about the abortion experience that would cause these women, after abortions, to die of natural causes at a rate 37% higher than the rate of those who delivered in Finland, and at a rate 40% higher than the rate of those who delivered in California? In searching for an answer, consider the physical effects of extreme emotional stress, guilt, and depression on a person’s general health status. These reactions are well documented in many women who have had the abortion experience. It is widely acknowledged that such severe emotional/psychological challenges, as well as major depression, can be associated with general health breakdown for various reasons, including sleeping and eating disorders, cardiovascular events, and compromised immune response leading to adverse health outcomes. ABORTION IS LIKE A REPRODUCTIVE-RELATED ATOMIC BOMB BLAST: IMMEDIATE DEATH FOR SOME LONG TERM “FALLOUT” HARM OR DEATH FOR OTHERS Induced abortion and natural cause maternal death