General Article Systematic review of induced abortion and women's mental health published

Topic Selected: Abortion
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The review concludes that having an abortion does not increase the risk of mental health problems. The best current evidence suggests that it makes no difference to a woman’s mental health whether she chooses to have an abortion or to continue with the pregnancy. The review was commissioned by the Academy and carried out by the National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health (NCCMH) at the Royal College of Psychiatrists. The review’s Steering Group and the NCCMH carried out a systematic and comprehensive search of the literature and identified 180 potentially relevant studies published between 1990 and 2011. The Steering Group was careful to ensure only the best quality evidence was used, so all studies were subject to multiple quality assessments. In total, 44 papers were included in the review. On the basis of the best evidence available, the Steering Group concluded that:

  • Having an unwanted pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of mental health

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