Studies – PreTerm Delivery / Premature Birth / Prematurity Complications

Premature Complications could include neuro-developmental disorders such as cerebral palsy, autism, and Down Syndrome, bronchopulmonary distress and disease, failure to thrive, and many other conditions which can physically affect the child throughout life.
A 47-page, detailed summary chart of published studies of over one hundred peer-reviewed studies involving 34 countries stretching back from the present to 1972, noting an Abortion – Preterm delivery/Birth (APB) Link, can be found at Prevent Preterm preventpreterm.org.

Abortion Linked to Pre-Term and Post-Term Complications (OG,12/1999)

A new study has shown that women who abort are TWICE as likely to have pre-term or post-term deliveries. CITATION  Zhou, Weijin, et. al., "Induced Abortion and Subsequent Pregnancy Duration," Obstetrics & Gynecology 94(6):948-953 (Dec. 1999). METHODOLOGY Using three Danish national registries, researchers at the Danish Epidemiology Science Center identified 61,753 women who had their first pregnancies in 1980, 1981, or 1982. Of these 15,727 had a first trimester induced abortion. MAJOR FINDINGS Subsequent pregnancy outcomes for all of these women was tracked until 1994. Women who had one, two, or more previous induced abortions were, respectively, 1.89, 2.66, or 2.03 times more likely to have a subsequent pre-term delivery.  Prior induced abortion not only increased the risk of premature delivery, it also increased the risk of delayed delivery. Women who had one, two, or more induced abortions were, respectively, 1.89, 2.61, and 2.23 times more likely to have a post-term delivery (over 42 weeks).   Many States with Women's Right to Know laws prepare booklets for women considering abortion that are supposed to accurately describe the risks of abortion. Few truly do, since the preparation by the relevant state agency is highly politicized. Often these booklets inform women that abortion poses no significant risk to subsequent pregnancies.  This Danish study is the best to date on abortion's effect on subsequent pregnancy outcomes. Women have a right to know this information.  Any state prepared booklets describing the risks of abortion should be revised to include this information. Premature delivery is the leading cause of neo-natal handicaps and neo-natal deaths.  Informed consent booklets should also be revised to advise women...

Pre-term Delivery Increases After Abortion, French Study (BJOG,4/05)

Women with Abortion History Are at Increased Risk of Delivering Very Preterm Babies in Subsequent Pregnancies — [study published in 4/05 issue, British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Reuters Health]. Abstract:  Previous induced abortions and the risk of very preterm delivery: results of the EPIPAGE study.  BJOG. 2005 Apr;112(4):430-7.  Moreau C, Kaminski M, Ancel PY, Bouyer J, Escande B, Thiriez G, Boulot P, Fresson J, Arnaud C, Subtil D, Marpeau L, Roze JC, Maillard F, Larroque B; EPIPAGE Group. Epidemiological Research Unit on Perinatal and Women’s Health, INSERM U149, Villejuif, France. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the risk of very preterm birth (22-32 weeks of gestation) associated with previous induced abortion according to the complications leading to very preterm delivery in singletons. DESIGN: Multicentre, case-control study (the French EPIPAGE study). SETTING: Regionally defined population of births in France. SAMPLE: The sample consisted of 1943 very preterm live-born singletons (< 33 weeks of gestation), 276 moderate preterm live-born singletons (33-34 weeks) and 618 unmatched full-term controls (39-40 weeks). METHODS: Data from the EPIPAGE study were analysed using polytomous logistic regression models to control for social and demographic characteristics, lifestyle habits during pregnancy and obstetric history. The main mechanisms of preterm delivery were classified as gestational hypertension, antepartum haemorrhage, fetal growth restriction, premature rupture of membranes, idiopathic preterm labor and other causes. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Odds ratios for very preterm birth by gestational age and by pregnancy complications leading to preterm delivery associated with a history of induced abortion. RESULTS: Women with a history of induced abortion were at higher risk of very preterm delivery than those with no such history (OR + 1.5,...

7 Studies: Abortion and Subsequent Risk of Preterm Delivery (1993-2005)

Abortion and Subsequent Premature Birth (3/05) There are over 40 studies that demonstrate a statistically significant association between abortion and subsequent premature birth, especially extreme premature birth (XPB):  1993 Study: An Australian study by Lumley in l993 showed that having 3 abortions (mostly suction) is associated with a risk ratio of 5.6 for XPB (22-28 wks) (data base 121,000 deliveries). Reduce Preterm Risk Coalition Comments: Extremely preterm newborn (<28 weeks' gestation) have about THIRTY-EIGHT (38) times the risk of CP (Cerebral Palsy) as the general population of newborn.  In 1993 the truly great Australian preterm birth expert Judith Lumley reported that prior induced abortions boosted the risk of EXTREMELY newborn; one prior IA boosted relative XPB risk by 55% and two prior IAs boosted XPB risk by 146%. (Lumley J. The epidemiology of preterm birth. Bailliere's Clin Obstet Gynecology.1993;7(3):477-498) [comments by Brent Rooney, Reduce Preterm Risk Coalition, Vancouver, Canada www.jpands.org/vol8no2/rooney.pdf]   1998 Studies: Dr. DeCook:  In 1998, (data base of 243,000 deliveries), Lumley showed that 4 or more IAs [induced abortions] had a risk increase of 9 fold-NINE times the primagravida controls.  A 1998 study from Bavaria (data base 106,000) showed, for less than 32 wk deliveries, a RR of 2.5 after 1 abortion, 5.2 after 2 abortions, and 8.0 after 3 abortions.  1999 Study: A 1999 Danish study showed that a D&E [abortion] increased the risk of PTB [Pre-Term Birth] substantially:  after 1 D&E , RR 2.2,; after 2 D&Es, RR 12.5. 2002 Thorpe Study: The Thorpe study (Jan 2002, OB GYN Survey) noted 12 studies finding an association between IA and PTB, with an "increased risk of...

UNC Study: Negative Abortion Effect on Prematurity & Placenta Previa (OGS,1/2003)

[Abstract follows at end of this summary] Abortion increases risks of premature delivery (risk ratio elevation of 1.3 to 2.0), maternal depression and suicide, and other serious health consequences, such as placenta previa (RR of 1.7), reports a new medical study by prominent medical researchers. "Preterm delivery and depression are important conditions in women's health and avoidance of induced abortion has potential as a strategy to reduce their prevalence." The authors further conclude that more research is required, and that women need to be informed of these and other major long-term health risks of abortion: "…we conclude that informed consent before induced abortion should include information about the subsequent risk of preterm delivery and depression. Although it remains uncertain whether elective abortion increases subsequent breast cancer, it is clear that a decision to abort and delay pregnancy culminates in a loss of protection with the net effect being an increased risk." The "'loss of protection' effect is most pronounced in women under 20 years of age who elect to undergo abortion rather than continue their pregnancy. We think, now, that clinicians are obliged to inform pregnant women that a decision to abort her first pregnancy may almost double her lifetime risk of breast cancer through loss of the protective effect of a completed first full-term pregnancy earlier in life." Placenta previa effects 0.3% to 0.8% of pregnancies and is the leading cause of uterine bleeding in the third trimester and of medically indicated preterm birth. Pregnancies complicated by placenta previa result in high rates of preterm birth. low birth weight, and perinatal death.   The study, published in the...

Abortion-Premature Delivery Link (50 Published Studies Bibliography, 3/2003)

The March of Dimes has announced a major fund raising effort to understand and battle premature deliveries. March of Dimes medical director Dr. Nancy Green told Time magazine that there has been a 27 percent rise in premature births over the last few decades. (http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1101030210-418559,00.html) At least 50 published studies have shown significantly higher risk of premature birth and low birth weight deliveries among women with a history of abortion.(1-50) One of the best, a Danish record based study (1), found the risk doubled after just one abortion. Multiple abortions increase the risk even more. A doubling of risk among an estimated one-fourth of delivering women who have a prior history of abortion would result in a 25 percent rise overall. Other risk factors such as drinking, smoking, and drug use are also elevated by a history of abortion. According to the March of Dimes, "In 2000, hospital charges for 23,000 prematurity-related infant stays totaled $1.2 billion. The average charge was $58,000 per baby, compared to $4,300 for a typical newborn stay." (http://www.marchofdimes.com/aboutus/791_6775.asp)  Treatment of these children through employer health plans is estimated at $4.7 billion per year. One fifth of these costs may be is attributable to extra cases of prematurity arising from abortion-related morbidity.     Premature birth is the leading cause of neonatal death and is related to increased risk of cerebral palsy, vision and hearing loss, retardation and other lifelong health problems. The March of Dimes encourages prenatal screening for birth defects that can only be "treated" by abortion yet claims that they are neutral.   50 Significant Studies of Abortion/Prematurity Risk March 2003 [50...

BMJ: Induced Abortion Increases Risk in Future Pregnancies (2/2001)

HAVING AN INDUCED ABORTION INCREASES RISK IN FUTURE PREGNANCIES Editor – The latest of three Danish reports about reproductive history informs readers that "fetal loss is high in women in their late 30s or older, irrespective of reproductive history. This should be taken into consideration in pregnancy planning and counselling." [1] Consider a woman whose first pregnancy occurs at age 30. According to Melbye et al and Zhou et al, if she is pressured to have an induced abortion she should be warned that if she does so she will increase her risk of never having a birth. [2] [3] Will the abortion clinic tell her that her best chance for a full term birth is to carry her current pregnancy to term? No, it will not; no abortion clinic's consent form mentions such a risk. Even if the woman does have a future birth, a previous induced abortion roughly doubles the risk that it will be very preterm (less than 34 weeks' gestation), according to another study of Danish women (relative risk 1.99 (95% confidence interval 1.64 to 2.43)). [3] If the woman has two evacuation-type abortions she increases her risk of preterm birth by 1155% (5.14 to 30.64). [3] There are at least nine other reports that found an increased risk of prematurity from previous induced abortions [4] [5] (readers can visit www.vcn.bc.ca/~whatsup for references to 10 studies known to me). By not informing prospective patients of health risks associated with induced abortion, abortion doctors are violating their legal duty to protect health and not needlessly endanger it. Is there any serious health risk for a mother...

Abortion Increases Preterm Delivery Risk in Future Pregnancies (JPS,Summer 2003)

The U.S. has a very high preterm birth rate of nearly 12%. Preterm births are the number one cause of neonatal death and disease. This study offers an overwhelming case that prior induced abortions boost a woman's risk of a preterm delivery www.jpands.org/jpands0802.htm "ABSTRACT. At least 49 studies have demonstrated a statistically significant increase in premature births (PB) or low birth weight (LBW) risk in women with prior induced abortions (IAs). This paper will focus on the risk of early premature births (EPBs) (< 32 weeks gestation) and extremely early premature births (XPBs) (< 28 weeks gestation). Large studies have reported a doubling of EPB risk from two prior IAs. Women who had 4 or more IAs experienced, on average, nine times the risk of XPB, an increase of 800 percent. These results suggest that women contemplating IA (induced abortion) should be informed of this potential risk to subsequent pregnancies, and that physicians should be aware of the potential liability and possible need for intensified prenatal care.   Brent Rooney is the research director of the Reduce Preterm Risk Coalition; Byron C. Calhoun is a doctor of maternal-fetal medicine. ["Induced Abortion and Risk of Later Premature Births", Brent Rooney and Byron C. Calhoun, M.D.; Journal of American Physicians & Surgeons 2003;8(2):46-49, Summer; Assoc of Amer Physicians & Surgeons (AAPS).Vancouver, Canada, prolifeinfo.org; Pro-Life Infonet; 9Jun03]...

Abortion, Preterm Birth & Cerebral Palsy Link (Letter EJOGRB, 2001, 1999), Bibliography

European Medical Journal exposes Abortion-Cerebral-Palsy: Elective Surgery boosts Cerebral Palsy risk In their excellent review of CP (Cerebral Palsy) history, Schifrin and Longo end with the words, "We need to let the truth take us where it will."(1) This letter assumes that there is the courage to do exactly that. Although the etiology of CP has many uncertainties, preterm birth and incompetent cervix are considered to be risk factors.(2) A preterm new-born is much more likely to be Very Low Birth Weight (VLBW: birth weight under 1500 grams) than a full-term newborn. A Swedish study of 19 year-old boys reported fifty-five times the normal risk of CP for boys with VLBW (95% CI 40.8-75.2).(3)  From a 1991 CP-VLBW meta-analysis: "If one assumes the incidence of cerebral palsy in the general population to be 2/1000 live births …. then the relative risk for cerebral palsy among surviving VLBW infants would be 38 times that in the general population."(4) Elective Surgery and Preterm Birth risk There are at least seventeen studies that have found that previous induced abortions increase preterm birth risk.(8-24) The latest of these studies reported on 61,000 Danish women and is one of the largest studies ever linking "terminations" to later prematurity.(9)  The relative risk of a very preterm birth (before 34 weeks' gestation) for Danish women with one previous induced abortion is 1.99.  The relative risk of a pre-term birth for women with two previous "evacuation" type abortions is 12.55.(5) The RR for one previous "evacuation" abortion is 2.27.(5)   Why the silence about the abortion-prematurity risk and cerebral palsy from medical researchers? Let's have the courage...

Review: Abortion Increases Risk in Future Pregnancies (BMJ,2000,2001; BJC,1999; NEJM,1987; AJE,1981)

Editor – The latest of three Danish reports about reproductive history informs readers that "fetal loss is high in women in their late 30s or older, irrespective of reproductive history. This should be taken into consideration in pregnancy planning and counselling." [1] Consider a woman whose first pregnancy occurs at age 30. According to Melbye et al and Zhou et al, if she is pressured to have an induced abortion she should be warned that if she does so she will increase her risk of never having a birth. [2] [3] It is doubtful that abortion centers will inform women that their best chance for full term births in their lifetime is to carry the current pregnancy to term. There are at least nine other reports that found an increased risk of prematurity from previous induced abortions [4] [5] (readers can visit www.vcn.bc.ca/~whatsup for references to 10 studies known to me). By not informing prospective patients of health risks associated with induced abortion, abortion doctors are violating their legal duty to protect health. Is there any serious health risk for a mother who has a preterm birth? In their study of Danish women Melbye et al inform us that if the gestation of a newborn infant is under 32 weeks the mother has doubled her risk of breast cancer compared with having a full term birth (relative risk 2.08 (1.20 to 3.60) for gestation of 29-31 weeks). [2] Even if the woman does have a future birth, a previous induced abortion roughly doubles the risk that it will be very preterm (less than 34 weeks' gestation), according to another...