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June 10, 1968

Intrauterine Rubella Transmission

JAMA. 1968;204(11):1009-1010. doi:10.1001/jama.1968.03140240065026

To the Editor:—  The recent articles by E. B. Buynak et al (204:195, 1968) and others1,2 demonstrating the feasibility of attenuating rubella virus in a manner acceptable for vaccine use provides great expectation that this disease will soon be controlled. Unfortunately, during the time required to produce sufficient immunity in the population, many women and their physicians will be faced with the problem of rubella occurring in the first trimester of pregnancy. Therapeutic abortion is the only means presently available to prevent the birth of abnormal infants, and this is not legally condoned in most states.One of the major problems in establishing laws regarding abortion in instances where the infant may be born abnormal is determining the risk of abnormality. A number of studies have been reported in which the risk of congenital abnormalities of infants born to women with clinical rubella in the first trimester varies