The too-high rate of preterm births and low birth weight babies continues to plague state health agencies. But veteran pro-abortion apologist Dr. David Grimes assures readers in his recent Huffington post entry that any connection of premature births to abortion is merely an invention of “naive” pro-life enthusiasts.
Graves is brazenly dishonest.
The research into the effects of induced abortion upon future preterm births began in 1960 and now there are 147 statistically significant studies showing the connection. Many –if not most– women contemplating abortion wish to do get pregnant in the future. Is it not the essence of “informed consent” to make them aware of the possible consequences of that abortion for a subsequent pregnancy?
As a trained epidemiologist and prolific author, it is unconscionable for Grimes to write there is only a “weak association” between abortion and an increased risk of subsequent premature deliveries and/or low-weight babies. There is such a high number of studies– including two “gold standard” meta-analyses (also called systematic reviews) in 2009—that demonstrate otherwise.
The APB link is settled science, according to this excerpt (emphasis added) from the invaluable book Complications: Abortion’s impact on Women (Lanfranchi, Gentiles, Ring-Cassidy, 2013)
“Thanks to two recently-published systematic reviews it is now settled science that women who have had one or more induced abortions significantly increase their chances of later giving birth to a preterm or low-birth-weight child.
Shah and colleagues analyzed 37 sound studies, and determined that the adjusted estimate of increased risk of low birth weight births was 24 per cent after one abortion, and 47 per cent after more than one abortion. The adjusted risk of preterm birth — meaning under 37 weeks’ gestation — increased by 27 per cent after one abortion, and 62 per cent after two or more abortions. Swingle and colleagues reviewed 21 sound studies and concluded that one induced abortion increased the adjusted risk of a subsequent preterm birth by 25 per cent, while two or more abortions increased the risk by 51 per cent (Adjusted risk, means after other variables such as income, age and marital status have been taken account of).
More important, they found that women with prior induced abortions have 64 per cent higher risk of a very preterm delivery (under 32 weeks gestation) compared to women with no prior induced abortions. Both these studies confirm the “dose-response” effect; in other words, the more abortions a woman has, the greater her risk of later having a preterm and/or low weight birth child. Why should this be so? The explanation is that in a surgical abortion the cervix is forced open, thereby weakening it. The more abortions a woman has, the weaker her cervix is likely to become.”
For example, the large Kissler study he dislikes, clearly says, “Observational studies like ours, however large and well-controlled, will not prove causality.” But it adds, importantly, “Health care professionals should be informed about the potential risks of repeat induced abortions on infant outcomes in subsequent pregnancy.”
As a health “professional,” Grimes should stop denying the obvious.