Planned Parenthood's '5 facts' about abortion aren't based in reality. Here's the truth.
Analysis

Planned Parenthood’s ‘5 facts’ about abortion aren’t based in reality. Here’s the truth.

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“We know how important science is. Really. Without it, we’d have no modern medicine as we know it today, and… things would be bad.” So wrote Planned Parenthood’s Liz Galst in “It’s Science: 5 Facts You Need to Know About Abortion.” But, if you have to go out of your way to convince people you think something is important, are you covering for the fact that you really don’t value it at all? Galst writes for Planned Parenthood, “At the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, we also understand the dangers that come with misrepresenting science, flat-out lying about it, or promoting ‘alternative facts.'”

READ: 9 facts you need to know if you’re considering an abortion

But when it comes to Planned Parenthood and abortion, science is not the focus of America’s largest abortion corporation. (The focus is abortion, abortion, abortion — but that’s an investigation for another day.) Let’s dive in to the real science surrounding abortion. How many of these facts do you know? Let’s compare them with the “alternative facts” Planned Parenthood pushes out to women.

PLANNED PARENTHOOD’S ALTERNATIVE FACTS vs. REAL SCIENCE

#1: Abortion Safety

Planned Parenthood’s Alternative Fact: “Abortion is really safe.”

Scientific Fact: Abortion has real, documented medical risks.

Planned Parenthood publicly disagrees with the claim that “surgical abortion is a dangerous procedure that carries health consequences with it.” But how does science define the risks of an abortion in the second trimester? Like this:

  • Perforation or laceration of the uterus or cervix that can also damage a woman’s bowel, bladder, rectum, and other internal organs
  • Excessive bleeding and hemorrhaging
  • Cervical damage
  • Scarred tissue, which can result in future pregnancy complications like miscarriage and preterm birth
  • Uterine perforation or possible uterine rupture which can lead to death

These risks of second-trimester surgical abortion were all documented in a study published in the peer-reviewed “Reproductive Health Matters Journal” — not exactly known for being pro-life. The study is available from the U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

Another study, this one published in the peer-reviewed “Obstetrics & Gynecology” journal (popularly known as the “Green Journal”), discussed the health consequences of first trimester surgical abortion. The “three main complications” are “hemorrhage, infection, and incomplete abortion.” The study noted that injuries requiring surgery “occurred more often” with surgical abortion. Thromboembolic disease, psychiatric morbidity, and death were risks cited as well.

Science does not call something “really safe” when it carries with it a dizzying — and dangerous — host of complications that Planned Parenthood and most abortion chains prefer to ignore. The “really safe” claim is not science talking; it’s propaganda. Surely we can all agree that women deserve the real facts on abortion’s risks.

#2: Medication Abortion

Planned Parenthood’s Alternative Fact: “Medication abortion is safe and effective.”

Scientific Fact: Medication abortion is four times as risky and can be stopped, in many cases, with abortion reversal.

The study referenced above from the “Obstetrics & Gynecology” journal showed an overall 20.0% risk of adverse health consequences in women who had medication abortions. (This journal is the official medical journal of ACOG, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists — also not a pro-life organization.) The study concluded that overall adverse health consequences were four times more likely to happen in women who sought medication abortion. For hemorrhage — not a scientifically safe experience — the risk was over seven times more likely to occur. (15.6% vs. 2.1%)

Even though ACOG (which advocates for abortion) has documented that medication abortion is four times more unsafe than surgical abortion, Planned Parenthood pushes medication abortion on women, even opening facilities that only sell medication abortion.

The reason? Planned Parenthood charges the same amount for medication abortion as it does for surgical abortion, even though its time and equipment used on the woman is far less.

Planned Parenthood’s “effective” claim may be an attempt to suppress the emerging science of abortion reversal. A 2018 study in the peer-reviewed journal, “Issues in Law and Medicine” demonstrated that specific methods of abortion reversal can be 64-68% effective in stopping a medication abortion and resulting in a healthy baby‘s birth.

More information on abortion reversal and how to pursue it is available here.

#3: Abortion and Breast Cancer

Planned Parenthood’s Alternative Fact: “Abortion has no impact on a woman’s risk of breast cancer.”

Scientific Fact: Abortion alters a woman’s hormonal state and damages her body in a way that significantly contributes to a heightened risk for breast cancer. 

For a crash course on the science behind the abortion-breast cancer link, watch “Hush: The Documentary.” Filmmaker Punam Kumar Gill — who calls herself a pro-choice feminist — discovered the proven medical link between abortion and breast cancer by going straight to the source and interviewing medical experts on both sides of the abortion debate. For a quick run-down on what Kumar Gill uncovered, read this synopsis. Gill also explains in “Hush” that particular post-abortive women may be at even greater risk, detailing that one study found a “26 percent risk increase… in the group of women who had had an abortion but had no children.” She concluded that it is “ludicrous” to entirely deny the link between abortion and breast cancer, based on the medical science.

READ: Danish study shows long-term risks of abortion

#4: IUDs and Emergency Contraception

Planned Parenthood’s Alternative Fact: “Emergency contraception is birth control, NOT abortion.”

Scientific Fact: Emergency contraception, hormonal birth control, and copper IUDs can result in early abortions.

Planned Parenthood claims, “Plan B and ella delay ovulation, so an egg and sperm don’t meet in the first place. Both copper IUDs and hormonal IUDs prevent pregnancy. No fertilization, no pregnancy. It’s that simple.”

Here’s the problem: No one disputes that Plan B, ella, copper IUDs, and hormonal IUDs (as well as other forms of hormonal birth control) are designed to suppress ovulation. The problem — which Planned Parenthood conveniently overlooks — is that this is not the only thing emergency contraception and hormonal birth control is designed to do. Manufacturers of all these pills and devices freely admit that, if ovulation is not suppressed (and the suppression is documented to be unsuccessful at times), they will also act to strip the lining of a woman’s uterus and prevent implantation.

Implantation scientifically occurs after fertilization: this is when the new baby attaches to the wall of her mother’s uterus. Fertilization can occur if ovulation is not suppressed. Thus, while no one knows exactly how often fertilization occurs when a woman is on hormonal birth control, has a copper IUD, or takes emergency contraception, the scientists all know that it can and does happen. And a number of these babies are, in effect, aborted because they are prevented from implanting — again, after fertilization — thanks to the workings of the emergency contraception, hormonal birth control, or copper IUD. For more on the dangers of hormonal birth control, here are ten important facts.

Once again, women deserve all the facts, not just some.

#5: Abortion and Mental Health

Planned Parenthood’s Alternative Fact: “Women who have abortions are no more anxious or depressed than women who get pregnant but don’t undergo the procedure — but women who face barriers to care do experience distress.”

Scientific Fact: Abortion has long-term mental health consequences for women. It also presents an immediately doubled risk for suicide.

In 2018, the British Journal of Psychiatry published a report that examined 22 peer-reviewed studies on abortion and mental health. The report detailed that, after abortion, women had an “81% increased risk of mental health problems” and that almost ten percent of these problems were “shown to be directly attributable to abortion.” These numbers, the report concluded, point to what is considered a “statistically validated risk factor” for mental health issues.

Planned Parenthood links to a study published by JAMA Psychiatry, where, “for five years, researchers followed women who had abortions.” One problem inherent in the JAMA study Planned Parenthood relies on is that researchers stopped at five years. Many women do not experience negative mental health effects from abortion until after five years.

In one of the longest studies on the links between abortion and mental health to date, (published in 2016), more than 8,000 women were tracked for thirteen years after abortion. The study determined that, “even after adjusting for over twenty demographic variables and covariates, there is still a clear, significantly increased relative risk of mental health disorders for women who have abortions.” These mental health disorder included “affective and addictive disorders, including depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation, and abuse of marijuana, alcohol, or other illicit drugs.” More details on this study and other supporting ones are available here.

While mental health problems may take awhile to appear after abortion, the increased suicide risk is immediate. A study published in 2015 in a public health journal documented that “women with a recent induced abortion still have a 2-fold suicide risk” compared to women who have not had an abortion. The same study found that, “after induced abortions, the suicide rate increased by 30% among teenagers.”

As you can see, Planned Parenthood’s version of “facts” doesn’t measure up to reality.

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