Health February 16, 2023 | 10:00 am

Specialist warns that causing abortion is always dangerous

On a daily basis, the country’s health centers receive cases of patients of all ages who have medical complications as a result of induced abortions performed under unsafe conditions that endanger their health and lives. The consequences of having an unsafe abortion, whether because the woman ingested pills or another substance or because it was induced by another person, can range from emotional consequences to permanent anemia, mutilations, irreversible damage to the uterus, and even death.

This is how Dr. César López, president of the Dominican Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology, explains it, noting that in cases like this, where a woman’s life is put in danger, especially if she is an adolescent, no one is innocent, and there are responsibilities from all sectors, including a lack of sexual education in schools and the family itself. “Provoking or inducing an abortion will always be dangerous, and even more so if all the conditions that must be met, such as asepsis, correct anesthesia, and the expertise of the doctor who performs it, are not met,” he explained.

However, recent studies have shown that abortions are safe if performed between 70 days of gestation. Abortions are considered safe when they are “performed using a method recommended by WHO that is appropriate to the pregnancy duration and the person providing or supporting the abortion is trained,” according to experts such as Fathalla. “The WHO definition recognizes that the people, skills, and medical standards considered safe in the provision of induced abortions are different for medical abortion (which is performed with drugs alone), and surgical abortion (which is performed with a manual or electric aspirator), and that skills and medical standards required for safe abortion also vary depending upon the duration of the pregnancy and evolving scientific advances”.

The same studies state that abortions are considered less safe if they meet either the method or the provider criterion but not both. As a result, abortion is considered less safe when performed using outdated methods such as sharp curettage, even if the provider is trained, or when women using tablets lack access to proper information or a trained person if they require assistance.


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