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Abortion: Its Risks & Aftermath

Return to Catholic Life Section | The Gift of Life

Pregnant Woman and Grim Reaper

Abortion: Its Risks & Aftermath

Sources: Various

Important Notice: The following is not comprehensive. We make no guarantee regarding any item herein. Items herein may be graphic in nature. We condemn abortion-related violence. Do not inflict violence on those who procure, advise, or participate in abortions. The following is not intended as a political discussion or an official stand on political matters. We are not responsible for - or qualified / intending to give - medical advice. We are not liable for any occurrence which may result from using this site. By using this site you agree to all terms. For more terms information, click here.


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Abortion is Not Safe

Harmful Effects of Abortion on Women

Other Harmful Effects of Abortion

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Abortion is Not Safe

As (abortion-promoting) Planned Parenthood's own literature has once admitted, abortion is dangerous to a woman's health: 

"An abortion kills the life of a baby after it has begun. It is dangerous to your life and health. It may make you sterile so that when you want a child you cannot have it." (Planned Parenthood, Aug. 1963, emphasis added)

The fact is that there are numerous and serious risks of abortion. Abortion is not safe for women, even though it has been 'legalized' in the United States. Extensive research confirms harmful effects of abortion on women.

When a woman undergoes an abortion, the procedure unnaturally stops one of the primary functions of her body. This unnatural interruption of the natural workings of her very complex reproductive system is bound to have consequences. And it does. 

Besides being a "dangerous medical procedure", that kills a child and may physically and emotionally harm the mother, abortion also hurts society and puts eternal souls at risk. The consequences of abortion may be life-long and dire. For example, consider the following...

Harmful Effects of Abortion on Women

Abortion has been associated with many detrimental effects on a woman's health. For example:

  • Abortion may increase a woman's risk of breast cancer by as much as 50%. Also, those who have had an abortion may be more likely than other women to have recurrences of breast cancer and develop a more aggressive form of cancer than those who carried their baby to term. Of those who get breast cancer, as many as 25% may be expected to die from it. A woman may be almost three times more likely to have breast cancer due to an abortion than due to heredity. The risk may increase further after more abortions. Note that the breast cancer/abortion link has been documented in various studies. In contrast, note that carrying a baby to term may actually decrease a woman's risk of breast cancer. 

  • Abortion may increase a woman's risk of liver cancer.

  • Abortion may increase a woman's risk of ovarian cancer.

  • Abortion may increase a woman's risk of cervical cancer.

  • Complications from abortion may lead to cervical incompetence.

  • Those who have an abortion may suffer hemorrhage.

  • Those who have an abortion may experience scarring.

  • Abortion may result in permanent sterility. Those who have had an abortion may be 3-4 times more likely to become sterile. As many as 1 in 10 women who have an abortion may become sterile. After an abortion, a woman may end up permanently childless.

  • Abortion may result in urinary incontinence.

  • Those who have an abortion may suffer from infection.

  • Abortion may result in additional menstrual symptoms.

  • Those who have an abortion may suffer from a uterine rupture.

  • Those who have had an abortion may be 2-3 times more likely to suffer a miscarriage in future pregnancies.

  • Complications from abortions may lead to a hysterectomy.

  • Those who have had an abortions may be significantly more likely to experience life threatening ectopic pregnancies.

  • Abortion may be associated with overall poorer health (including more frequent psychological and medical problems).

  • Those who have had an abortion may more likely to suffer from uterine adhesions.

  • As many as 3% of women obtaining abortions may suffer perforation of their uterus as a result of the procedure.

  • Teenagers who have had an abortion may be more than two times more likely to experience endometriosis.

  • Over 1% of women obtaining abortions may suffer cervical lacerations requiring sutures.

  • A woman who has had an abortion may be more likely, in future pregnancies, to develop premature rupture of membranes, and pre-term hemorrhaging.

  • As many as 10% of women who have an abortion may be expected to suffer immediate complications from the procedure (as many as 20% of these being life threatening).

  • As many as 94% of women have experienced negative psychological affects due to their abortion. It is not uncommon for a woman who has had an abortion to suffer from post abortion trauma (sometimes called "post abortion syndrome"). The woman may experience recurrent dreams, feelings that the abortion is recurring, acute stress (especially on certain occasions, e.g. during subsequent pregnancies, upon seeing pregnant women, upon visiting medical facilities, etc.), sleeping difficulties, avoidance of certain activities or situations (such as those that might remind her of the abortion), feeling of detachment, withdrawal from others, inability to love, difficulty concentrating, irritability, depression, guilt, suicidal thoughts, and others...

  • Abortion may be a primary cause of suicide.

  • Abortion has been called "significantly linked" to behavioral changes, including drug abuse, eating disorders, and promiscuity.

  • Although most abortion-related deaths may not be reported as such, even the reported deaths from legal abortions may be the fifth leading cause of maternal death in the U.S.

  • Side effects of/complications from abortion may include: excessive bleeding, severe pain, placental, uteral, or cervical infection or rupture, reduced fertility / infertility, sterility, infection, cervical laceration, uncontrollable blood clotting, ripping / perforation of the uterus, cervical injury, endotoxic shock, second degree burns, embolism, anesthesia complications, convulsions, chronic abdominal pain, seizures, coma, loss of body organs, insomnia, nervousness, nightmares (as many as 54% may continue to have nightmares 5-10 years after an abortion), and death.

  • Those who have had abortions may be more likely, in subsequent pregnancies, to experience miscarriages, stillbirths, low birth weights, infant deaths, labor complications (including excessive bleeding), as well as fetal malformation (reproductive complications which are leading causes of handicaps among newborns may be associated with abortion).

  • A woman who has had an abortion may be twice as likely than other women to have a premature birth in subsequent pregnancies. The risk may be even higher risk with more abortions. Note that premature labor may lead to many health problems, including cerebral palsy (over a thousand babies with cerebral palsy are reportedly attributable to the mother's previous abortion), and infant death.

  • A woman who has had an abortion may be more likely to suffer depression during a subsequent pregnancy.

  • Abortion may increase a woman's risk by as much as fifteen-fold of developing placenta previa in future pregnancies (which may be life threatening to both the mother and the baby).

  • "Women who choose abortion face an elevated risk of death from all causes, especially suicide. They experience more depression, more substance abuse, more delivery problems in later pregnancies, lower levels of general health, more divorces, more breast cancer and countless other physical and psychological problems."

  • Other side effects/experiences of women who have had abortions: trouble facing their children, remembering the sounds of the suction machine, finding parts of the aborted baby left inside them, jealousy of other pregnant women, feeling as though insides were being ripped out, remembering seeing their perfectly formed dead baby in a basin. They have also ended up infertile, in a psychiatric ward, dead, and haunted by the abortion.

  • There have been many difficult and painful emotional and psychological effects on women after an abortion (often called abortion trauma or post-abortion stress disorder), including: regret, sadness, guilt, severe depression, nightmares, anguish, despair, suicidal tendencies. There are thousands of documented cases. The women find that abortion failed to solve their original "problem", but instead added to their problems.

  • Etc.

Note that those who have multiple abortions may have a much greater risk of complications.

Other Harmful Effects of Abortion

In addition the detrimental health effects indicated above, abortion may be associated with various other harmful effects/situations. For example:

  • Abortion has ruined marriages and other relationships. As many as 70% of couple's relationships may end within a month of an abortion.

  • A woman may resent those who encouraged her to have an abortion.

  • "Abortion has devalued life."

  • Abortion may impair one's ability to function ("It doesn't go away; I think all the time about what happened").

  • Abortion ruins women's lives.

  • "Abortion diminishes restraint against aggressing the defenseless."

  • Abortion detrimentally affects fathers.

  • Abortions are often regretted. At that point, they cannot be undone. There is nothing the mother can do to bring back her aborted child. The guilt may feel unbearable.

  • "Abortion saps the strength of our country by killing off our young and ruins the moral fiber of our nation."

  • "More women are injured by abortion today than before it was legalized." Many women die from so called "safe, legal" abortions.

  • Abortion damages society as a whole.

  • Abortion is murder - a grave sin - which may cause the eternal loss of souls. Abortion even prevents babies from receiving baptism.

  • Abortion affects medical personnel. Those who have assisted in abortions have seen abortionists tear off limbs, crush heads, and leave babies to die slowly. They may have even seen them incinerated alive or torn apart for experiments. They have seen blood, internal organs, limbs, fingers and toes removed from mothers' wombs. Various negative effects on abortion industry personnel have been documented.

  • Abortion distorts the meaning of life: "Consequently, when the sense of God is lost, the sense of man is also threatened and poisoned... He no longer considers life as a splendid gift of God, something 'sacred' entrusted to his responsibility and thus also to his loving care and 'veneration'. Life itself becomes a mere 'thing', which man claims as his exclusive property, completely subject to his control and manipulation. Thus, in relation to life at birth or at death, man is no longer capable of posing the question of the truest meaning of his own existence, nor can he assimilate with genuine freedom these crucial moments of his own history. He is concerned only with 'doing', and, using all kinds of technology, he busies himself with programming, controlling and dominating birth and death. Birth and death, instead of being primary experiences demanding to be 'lived', become things to be merely 'possessed' or 'rejected'. Moreover, once all reference to God has been removed, it is not surprising that the meaning of everything else becomes profoundly distorted." (Pope John Paul II, 1995)

  • Abortion helps unleash a 'conspiracy against life': "[W]e are confronted by an even larger reality, which can be described as a veritable structure of sin. This reality is characterized by the emergence of a culture which denies solidarity and in many cases takes the form of a veritable 'culture of death'. This culture is actively fostered by powerful cultural, economic and political currents which encourage an idea of society excessively concerned with efficiency. Looking at the situation from this point of view, it is possible to speak in a certain sense of a war of the powerful against the weak: a life which would require greater acceptance, love and care is considered useless, or held to be an intolerable burden, and is therefore rejected in one way or another. A person who, because of illness, handicap or, more simply, just by existing, compromises the well-being or life-style of those who are more favored tends to be looked upon as an enemy to be resisted or eliminated. In this way a kind of 'conspiracy against life' is unleashed. This conspiracy involves not only individuals in their personal, family or group relationships, but goes far beyond, to the point of damaging and distorting, at the international level, relations between peoples and States." (Pope John Paul II, 1995)

  • Abortion helps contribute to a darkening of conscience: "The fact that legislation in many countries, perhaps even departing from basic principles of their Constitutions, has determined not to punish these practices against life, and even to make them altogether legal, is both a disturbing symptom and a significant cause of grave moral decline. Choices once unanimously considered criminal and rejected by the common moral sense are gradually becoming socially acceptable. Even certain sectors of the medical profession, which by its calling is directed to the defense and care of human life, are increasingly willing to carry out these acts against the person. In this way the very nature of the medical profession is distorted and contradicted, and the dignity of those who practice it is degraded...The end result of this is tragic: not only is the fact of the destruction of so many human lives still to be born or in their final stage extremely grave and disturbing, but no less grave and disturbing is the fact that conscience itself, darkened as it were by such widespread conditioning, is finding it increasingly difficult to distinguish between good and evil in what concerns the basic value of human life." (Pope John Paul II, 1995)

  • Abortion offends God. Abortion kills the child made in His image and involves both the mother and the abortionist in a mortal sin.

  • Etc.

Abortion is 'bad medicine' for everyone.


Also Try...

Abortion (Topic Page)

Abortion Misinformation

The Abortion Procedure

Abortion Kills

The Unborn Baby

Abortion is a Grave Sin

There is Help for Women Considering Abortion

Adoption: The Loving Choice

Life Issues (Reflections)

Catholic Life (Reflections)

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Topical Scripture: Alphabetical | Categorized

Tough Love in the New Testament  

Other New Testament Teachings 

Old Testament Wisdom

More Scripture / Parables

Catholic Basics

Can Catholic Dogma Ever Change?

Is the 1917 Code of Canon Law Still Applicable?

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