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Does abortion lead to depression?

ANI | Updated: May 31, 2018 11:36 IST

Washington D.C. [USA], May 31 (ANI): Having an abortion does not lead to depression in women, a study recently concluded.
To better understand the relationship between having an abortion and women's mental health, Dr. Julia R. Steinberg from the University of Maryland School of Public Health, and colleagues analysed data on Danish women born between 1980-1994.
The information included abortions, childbirths and antidepressant prescriptions as recorded by the Danish National Registries. It is the first study to explore the risk of antidepressant use around an abortion as a proxy for depression.
The study concludes that the risk of antidepressant use did not change from the year before to the year after an abortion and that the risk of antidepressant use decreased as more time after the abortion elapsed.
"Policies based on the notion that abortion harms women's mental health are misinformed," said Dr. Steinberg. "Abortion is not causing depression. Our findings show that women were not more likely to suffer from depression after an abortion compared to beforehand."
Compared to women who did not have an abortion, those who did had a higher risk of antidepressant use. But Dr. Steinberg stresses that this higher risk was the same for both the year before and the year after the abortion, indicating that the higher risk is not due to the abortion, but to other factors such as pre-existing mental health problems and other adverse experiences.
The findings have been published in the journal JAMA Psychiatry. (ANI)