/ əbɔːrʃn̩ /
Množina reči abortion je abortions.
ETYM Latin abortio, from aboriri. Related to Abort.
Termination of pregnancy.
Ending of a pregnancy before the fetus is developed sufficiently to survive outside the uterus. Loss of a fetus at a later gestational age is termed premature stillbirth. Abortion may be accidental (miscarriage) or deliberate (termination of pregnancy).
In the first nine weeks of pregnancy, medical termination may be carried out using the “abortion pill” (mifepristone) in conjunction with a prostaglandin. There are also various procedures for surgical termination, such as dilatation and curettage, depending on the length of the pregnancy.
Worldwide, an estimated 150,000 unwanted pregnancies are terminated each day by induced abortion. One-third of these abortions are performed illegally and unsafely, and cause one in eight of all maternal deaths.
Abortion as birth control.
Abortion as a means of birth control has long been controversial. The argument centers largely upon whether a woman should legally be permitted to have an abortion and, if so, under what circumstances. Another aspect is whether, and to what extent, the law should protect the fetus.
Those who oppose abortion generally believe that human life begins at the moment of conception, when a sperm fertilizes an egg. This is the view held, for example, by the Roman Catholic Church. Those who support unrestricted legal abortion may believe in a woman's right to choose whether she wants a child, and may take into account the large numbers of deaths and injuries from unprofessional back-street abortions.
Others approve abortion for specific reasons. For example, if a woman's life or health is jeopardized, abortion may be recommended; and if there is a strong likelihood that the child will be born with severe mental or physical disability. Other grounds for abortion include pregnancy resulting from sexual assault such as rape or incest.
The antiprogesterone pill RU486 was developed and first used 1989 in France. A success rate of 95% is claimed for its use in conjunction with a prostaglandin.
In the United States in 1989, a Supreme Court decision gave state legislatures the right to introduce some restrictions on the unconditional right, established by the Supreme Court in an earlier decision (Roe v. Wade), for any woman to decide to have an abortion.