MODENA, Italy, Aug 21, 2001 ( – A study conducted in Italy has found that an annual peak in elective abortions in summer coincides with an annual peak in female suicides. “The almost complete similarity of the seasonal rhythm of female suicides and that of voluntary abortion furnishes valid support for a strong relationship between the two,” say researchers Angelo Cagnacci and Annibale Volpe at the University of Modena.

The study, published in the current issue of the journal Human Reproduction, looked at data on Italian women between 1995 and 1998, following over 500,000 abortions. The results showed a “seasonal rhythm in the rate of voluntary abortion, which is almost identical to that of female suicides.” They suggested that measures to reduce depression such as support from family and friends might also reduce voluntary abortion.

The study rebuffed suggestions that abortion was fueling the suicide rate saying that the pattern of female suicide was not altered by the legalization of abortion. However, the data show that voluntary abortions peaked in May and female suicides peaked in June.

See the abstract from Human Reproduction (vol 16, p 1748) and coverage in the New Scientist:

(with files from Pro-Life E-News)