Beliefs about abortion risks in women returning to the clinic after their abortions: A pilot study

Lisa L. Littman, Adam Jacobs, Rennie Negron, Tara Shochet, Marji Gold, Miriam Cremer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Background: Misinformation regarding the risks of abortion is prevalent and commonly includes medical inaccuracies about health, depression, infertility and breast cancer. This pilot study sought to assess misinformation among abortion clients as well as the origin(s) of their abortion knowledge. Study Design: Women who presented to the Mount Sinai School of Medicine Family Planning Division for postabortion follow-up were recruited for participation. Participants completed a researcher-administered survey regarding knowledge and beliefs about abortion. Results: Sixty-seven women completed the survey between 1/11/10 and 8/6/12. Common sources of abortion information included clinicians (79.1%), Web sites (70.1%), friends (50.7%) and family (40.3%). Over two thirds of women (77.6%) overestimated the health risks, and close to half (43.3%) overestimated the risk of depression after a first trimester abortion. Conclusions: Misperceptions about the health risks of abortion were prevalent among this sample. Education tools should be developed to provide accurate information about the risks of abortion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-22
Number of pages4
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2014


  • Abortion
  • Counseling
  • Knowledge
  • Misinformation
  • Risks


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