Catholic Culture Resources
Catholic Culture Resources
Catholic World News

Study claiming no emotional suffering after abortion was deeply flawed, analysis shows

December 20, 2016

A professor at Ohio’s Bowling Green University has produced a terse but devastating critique of a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), purportedly showing that women do not suffer adverse psychological effects from abortion.

The JAMA study, which received widespread media attention, was seriously flawed in several different ways, argued Priscilla Coleman. The study—and the fact that it was published in a respected journal—shows a disturbing willingness to “ignore the foundation and methods of science in service to a political end.”

Coleman notes that the JAMA study used a simplistic measure of abortion outcomes, an unrepresentative sample of women who had procured abortions, and failed to take into account the different psychological effects that abortion might have at different points in pregnancy. Only 22% of the woman selected for the sample completed the study, and the authors acknowledged that women with negative experiences after their abortions may have been more likely to drop out of the study. Not surprising, funding for the JAMA research was provided by the David and Lucille Packard Foundation, which has an institution commitment to “advice reproductive health and right for women…”

Priscilla Coleman reports that in her own review of 22 different studies on the effects of abortion, involving nearly 900,000 participants, the results showed that women who procure abortion have an 81% increased risk of mental-health problems.

Coleman concludes that the JAMA study should be “tossed the dusty stack with other similarly compromised studies that have yielded results palatable to a culture fighting to normalize a procedure that will never feel natural or right to countless women.’”


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