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May 5, 1993

The Myth of the Abortion Trauma Syndrome Revisited

Author Affiliations

University of Missouri-Columbia

JAMA. 1993;269(17):2210. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500170039016

To the Editor.  —In her Commentary entitled "The Myth of the Abortion Trauma Syndrome,"1 Dr Stotland provides a valuable service to the medical profession and to the American people. My experiences as a family physician over the past 20 years certainly confirm her conclusion that this syndrome does not exist. I have seen dozens of women who were struggling to decide what to do about an unwanted pregnancy. Some of these women chose to continue the pregnancy and to keep the baby, some chose to continue the pregnancy and relinquish the baby for adoption, and others chose to terminate the pregnancy. My impression from following many of these women is that those who chose to terminate the pregnancy, in general, had better long-term psychological adjustment than those who elected to continue the pregnancy. I have been particularly concerned about long-term emotional distress and depression in some women who relinquished