International Medical Conference Exposes Serious Consequences of Abortion

By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman

  LISBON, November 12, 2007 ( - An international medical conference held in Lisbon, Portugal last week examined the serious psychological and medical consequences suffered by millions of women who have had abortions.

  The first Lisbon Conference on Human Life Studies, which was promoted by the feminist Women in Action Association, featured psychologists, therapists, obstetricians, and biologists from the United States, Britain, and Portugal, who discussed the scientific evidence that abortion harms not only the unborn, but their mothers as well.

  Dr. Vincent Rue of the U.S. Institute for Pregnancy Loss spoke about the clinical evidence that women suffer psychological harm from abortion in a talk titled "Trauma, Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome, and Abortion".  His presentation was followed by one given by Dr. Priscilla Coleman of West Virginia University on "Research on Post-Abortion Mental Health". According to one U.S. study cited during the conference, 19% of women suffer from some sort of emotional problem stemming from their abortions. Another study cited gave a range of 20-30%.

  The harmful effects of RU-486 were also discussed at the conference in a talk given by Prof. Dr. Margarida Castel-Branco of Portugal, who said that the effects of the drug included loss of blood for between nine and 45 days, fever, tiredness, vomiting, and diarrhea. "Its a drawn-out process with complicated effects, for which medical supervision is necessary," she said. 

  Other talks were given on "Abortion and Breast Cancer" and "Post-Abortion Premature Birth Risk".

  Dr. Carlos Ramalheira of Portugal, who moderated Dr. Coleman’s talk, noted that "We (psychiatrists) all encounter innumerable cases of people who begin to suffer due to their life experience (regarding abortion).

  Dr. Vadriano Vaz Serra, also a psychiatrist, agreed and noted that "I have observed cases of this. This reality exists in Portugal, we just don’t know the dimensions, the quantitative data." He said that with an abortion the woman loses an "emotional link" that can result in depression. He also said that he hopes that there will be "sufficient freedom and democratic spirit" in Portugal to enable researchers to do similar studies.

  Portugal’s socialist government legalized abortion-on-demand during the first ten weeks of pregnancy in March of this year. Previously, abortions were legal in cases of rape, fetal deformity, or health risks to the mother.

  Related Coverage:

  Portuguese Government Orders Doctors to Remove Anti-Abortion Restrictions from Code of Ethics

  Abortion on Demand Law Goes into Effect in Portugal

  Portugal Legalizes Abortion as President Silva Approves Legislation

  Portugal Anti-Abortion Demonstration Draws 18,000 Pro-Life Supporters

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