Elective Abortion

Techniques, Risks, and Complications
  • Richard H. Schwarz


With the advent of prenatal diagnosis of hereditary disorders has come the need to utilize pregnancy termination as the predominant therapeutic approach since in almost all instances this is the only recourse. Indeed, in the early days of prenatal diagnosis the acceptance of the abortion alternative was considered by most to be a prerequisite. This posture has been modified, but an explanation of the techniques and risks of elective abortion must be an important part of the counseling process. There are three major considerations in elective abortion for genetic disorders. First, the variety of techniques available must be evaluated with regard to their efficacy at the period of gestation under consideration. Second, the risks of these methods must be carefully assessed and presented to the patient. Third, but not so important, the suitability of the aborted material for corroborative cytogenetic and biochemical study must be considered. This chapter will review each of the methods in these three perspectives but will place particular emphasis on that method felt most appropriate for the majority of cases.


Amniotic Fluid Prenatal Diagnosis Disseminate Intravascular Clotting Hypertonic Saline Uterine Rupture 
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Copyright information

© Aubrey Milunsky 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Richard H. Schwarz
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Downstate Medical CenterState University of New YorkBrooklynUSA

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