Women who abort may face mental distress even years after the incident, says a study.

Anne Nordal Broen and colleagues from the University of Oslo, Norway, studied 40 women who had had a miscarriage and 80 women who had undergone an induced abortion, science portal EurekAlert reported.

The women were interviewed and asked to complete questionnaires 10 days, six months, two years and five years after the pregnancy termination. The aim was to assess the women’s feelings about the event and measure their levels of stress, anxiety and their quality of life.

The study found that women who had a miscarriage suffer more mental distress until six months after the event than women who had an abortion.

Women who had an abortion, however, experienced more mental distress long after the event – two and five years afterwards – than women who had a miscarriage.

Women who had an abortion experienced high levels of anxiety, feelings of guilt, shame and relief and had to make efforts to avoid thoughts about the event.

Women who had an abortion experienced more anxiety 10 days, six months, two years and five years after the incident, according to a study in the open access journal BMC Medicine.

More here.