To the editor:

I examine numerous scientific journals each month and find very interesting results of statistical studies within them. A study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry in January caught my eye.

The study looked into the incidence of mental health problems among women after having abortions. The results were truly stunning.

The study showed that the analysis of 22 studies on abortion and mental health consistently indicated that women who had an abortion faced an 81 percent increased risk of mental health problems post-abortion.

In total, there were more than 877,000 participants in the studies, an extremely gigantic sample for statistical analysis, which adds to the validity of the findings. Fifteen of the studies were from the U.S. and seven were from other countries. The studies looked at abortion and its impact through 36 “measures of effect” including suicide, depression and other psychiatric outcomes.

The strongest effects observed when women who had an abortion were compared to women who had carried to term were related to substance abuse and suicide, with the others being statistically relevant also. The study validated previous findings that there is a protective effect for women who carry to delivery as compared to those who don’t.

The results of the study indicated that abortion is definitely a statistically validated risk factor for the development of various mental disorders.

I think there will be a huge amount of research into just what causes this effect, but I think it will be extremely tough to determine or to prove. But the results of this valid statistical study should be part of any conversation about abortion and any policies concerning it.