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Throughout this paper we will talk about the different topics of an abortion. I am not really for abortion, but I am not against abortion either. There has to be a good reason for a mother to want to have an abortion for it to be all right.

As a young kid, we probably asked ourselves what is abortion? It is the killing of the fetus or embryos before it is able to develop and live outside the uterus. They also ask what are the alternatives for abortion? The only one is for you to go through all of the pain and emotional times and then give the baby up for adoption.

There are two types of abortions. The first one is induced abortion. That is a procedure meant to kill a known pregnancy. It may occur for many reasons: to save the life of physical or mental well-being of the mother, to prevent a pregnancy from rape or incest, and to prevent a birth of a child with major deformity, a mental deficiency or genetic abnormality. This procedure is usually performed within the first twelve weeks.

The second type is spontaneous abortion. It occurs when the embryo fails to develop. It will occur before a women’s pregnancy can be confirmed. Three fourths of all pregnancies are spontaneously aborted. When this happens, a women may experience cramping and blood loss. This will usually occur around the twentieth week of the pregnancy. Another name for this is a miscarriage. This occurs when the fetus fails to develop after twenty weeks.

Half of all miscarriages are caused by defects in the fetus or uterus. This is natures way of dealing with a fetus that won’t survive outside the uterus. Abortions or miscarriages may be caused by; diseases, trauma, and genetic biochemical incompatibility of the mother and fetus (Swanson, 35-36). Ten to twenty percent of women pregnant suffer miscarriages after the first ten days (Washam, 10). Seventy five percent of all fertilized human eggs are naturally aborted (Washam, 10).

During the first trimester, the procedure could be very painful. They do a procedure called vacuum aspiration or vacuum curettage. After dilation of the cervix, a hollow plastic tube with a hole near the end is inserted into the uterus. The embryo or fetus and placenta are sucked into the tube called vacuum pressure.

During the second trimester, it is just as painful as the first trimester. Within sixteen weeks the most common procedure is dilation and evacuation. The next common procedure is injection of fluid containing saline solution or hormones called prostagiandins into the amniotic sac.

Throughout the nineteenth, century countries passed laws prohibiting abortion. Half of the world’s people live where abortion is available on request. A fourth of the world’s people live where abortion is permitted to protect women health. In the nineteen hundreds, fifty to sixty million induced abortions occurred (Hogue, 60). Thirty million of those occurred in health clinics. Legal abortion

was not available in the U.S. until nineteen seventy. During the nineteen-nineties, a law was passed that required teenage girls to notify both parents before getting an abortion. The state legislature outlawed abortions except in cases of rape, incest, or to save a mother’s life. In nineteen eighty, half of the abortions were in freestanding clinics. Twenty-seven per thousand U.S. women have induced abortions each year (Hogue, 60). The abortion rate is highest in countries where birth control is not available. Most of the women who have abortions have feelings of loss and regret. Ninety percent of abortions in the U.S. are carried out within the first twelve

weeks (Washam, 10). In nineteen eighty a drug came out called RU 486 it proved to be eighty five percent effective during the first six weeks (Grolier Electronic Publishing). In the U.S. this drug has been tested and used against other diseases such as cancer. Fifteen percent of all women who use birth control will become pregnant (Terkel, 111-120). This causes side effects. Fifteen hundred women have to have

induced abortions because the fetus is deformed. The option to have an abortion gives some women the courage to have children. Women with a unwanted pregnancy are faced with anxiety, uncertainly, and ambivalence.

The human life begins at conception and that abortion is the intentional killing of the fetus (Grolier Electronic Publishing). There were two groups formed about abortion. One was called “right to lifers”. They were ready to amend the constitution, close down every clinic, and persuade every women not to have one. The other group was called “Pro Choice”, they believed every women has the right to have one if they want to. Twenty percent of Americans believe abortion is morally wrong, regardless of the reason (Terkel, 82). Twenty to twenty-five percent believe women are entitled to have one if she wants it (Terkel,

82). There are many reasons why they feel it is all right such as: save mother’s life, health is seriously threatened, victim of rape or incest, fetus in grossly deformed.

There are many complications that are involved in abortion. There are a lot of infections you can get: blood clots, excessive bleeding, tears in the cervix, perforation of the uterine wall, and amniotic fluid embolism (Terkel, 43-56). If the amniotic fluid enters the bloodstream and goes to the heart, it can cause death. There is also post abortion syndrome. This is depression from having an abortion which can also make them angry. This can occur immediately after abortion or years later. It can be treated by going to counseling or a support group.

There are many reasons why women have abortions. They could be pregnant and single and want to postpone motherhood. They feel like they can’t cope with another child at this particular time. They were victims of rape, or incest. They want to preserve their health or life. They may remain pregnant and bear a child, but they might commit suicide.

In this paper we have talked about the different kinds of abortions, the different procedures, the facts, the ethical aspects, and even the complications of abortion, and why women make a choice like this. I hope you have learned something from this paper.


Abortion, Grolier Electronic Publishing, 1993

Hogue, Carol. “Abortion.” Academic American Encyclopedia. 1997.

Swanson, Charles E. “Abortion.” The New Encyclopedia Britannica. 1768.

Terkel, Susan N. Abortion “Facing The Issues.” Franklin Watts: New York, 1988

Washam, C. “Abortion.” Encyclopedia of Life Science. 1996.