Since Planned Parenthood claims that abortion is one of the safest medical procedures around, it comes as no surprise that their studies report low abortion complication rates. In 2013, a Planned Parenthood study showed that very few women were treated for hemorrhage at their facilities and therefore concluded they are performing safe abortions.
However, in an article in the National Review, Dr. Donna Harrison, says the supposed low complication rate is most likely because women who did experience complications went to another doctor after their abortions.
The most common complications of induced abortion include hemorrhage, uterine perforation and infection from an incomplete abortion. Dr. Harrison writes, “Planned Parenthood has no mechanism for tracking complications handled by emergency rooms or other doctors. So, they have “no record of problems” for these women. This makes the rate of complications seem much lower than they are reality, because both Planned Parenthood studies calculate only the complications ‘reported to Planned Parenthood clinics.’”
Additionally, LifeNews has chronicled countless examples of Planned Parenthood performing botched abortions that have maimed and even killed women. For example, in 2013 a Planned Parenthood facility in Delaware experienced five botched abortion emergencies in less than five weeks. As a result of the scandal, one abortionist and two employees stopped working at the Delaware affiliate.
A major review of nearly 7,000 abortions performed in Australia using a similar dose of medical abortion drugs in 2009 and 2010 found that 3.3 percent of patients required emergency hospital treatment, in contrast to 2.2 percent of patients who underwent surgical abortions. Women receiving medication abortions were admitted to hospitals at a rate of 5.7 percent following the abortion, as compared with 0.4 percent for patients undergoing surgical abortion.
The largest and most accurate study of medication abortions was published in 2009 and consists of a review of actual medical records from 22,368 women who were administered abortion drugs at a dose similar to that used in the Planned Parenthood studies. These 22,368 women were then compared with 20,251 women who underwent surgical abortions. According to this study, women had four times as many serious complications with medication abortions than with surgical abortions. These complications included hemorrhaging in approximately one out of six women (15.6 percent). More than three out of every 50 women (6.7 percent) had fetal tissue left inside, most of whom (5.9 percent) required surgery to get the tissue out. According to this study, the rate of these complications was higher with medical abortion than with surgical abortion.
In fact, there are six studies published in the last six years, with similar results. These studies looked at women who had medical abortions using the same doses of drugs as in the Planned Parenthood studies. The studies from Australia and Finland, cited above, used the actual medical records of women in countries with socialized medicine, not “complications reported to Planned Parenthood.”
These six studies all show that the rate of necessary surgery after a medication abortion varies from 3.4 to 5.9 percent. That means that somewhere around one out of every 20 women who get a medical abortion will need surgery for hemorrhage or because of tissue left inside. And about one out of 100 of those will be emergency surgeries for life-threatening hemorrhage.