National Partnership for Women & Families

Journal Review

Abortion Providers Must Delve Into Context of Stigma Surrounding Their Profession
In a commentary, University of California-San Francisco's Carole Joffe writes about the stigma surrounding abortion providers and their marginalization in relation to other physicians. She discusses such issues in the context of both historical developments and recent increases in abortion restrictions throughout the U.S., concluding that one way to address abortion stigma is to explore the difference between stigma, marginality and controversy.

Study: Most Women Can Self-Assess Pregnancy Test Results After Early Medication Abortions
Researchers at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh examined whether women could reliably self-assess the results of pregnancy tests after undergoing early medication abortions. They found that that "most women ... neither want nor need scheduled telephone contact from a provider" after an early medication abortion and "feel comfortable with taking the responsibility for interpreting the result of [a pregnancy] test" after their abortions.

Parent-Daughter Communication Affects Teens' Likelihood of Discussing Abortion Decisions
Researchers at the University of Chicago examined the effect of parent-daughter communication about sexual health, pregnancy and abortion on teens' abortion decisions and whether they would tell their parents about those decisions. The researchers recommended efforts that focus on providing parents with the necessary tools to discuss sexual health with their daughters, rather than on parental involvement laws mandating such communication during pregnancy.

Common Methods for Estimating Chlamydia Screening Rates Inaccurate, Study Finds
Inconsistent methods for calculating chlamydia screening rates have made it difficult to accurately assess how many women undergo annual testing, which is recommended for all sexually active women under age 26. In this study, University of Washington-Seattle researchers compared methods that rely on self-reports and insurance data, finding that neither method alone is sufficient to accurately estimate screening rates.

Women's Emotions After Pre-Abortion Ultrasounds Provide 'Little Support' for Mandatory Viewing
Researchers at the University of California-San Francisco's Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health examined women's emotional responses to viewing an ultrasound prior to an abortion. They concluded that "the impact of [ultrasound] viewing on women's emotions about their pregnancy is overestimated" and provides "little support for abortion rights opponents' hope that viewing will inspire bonding emotions with the fetus."

Efforts To Promote LARC Methods Must Avoid Undermining 'Reproductive Autonomy,' Experts Argue
In a commentary, three reproductive health experts consider whether "unchecked enthusiasm" for and promotion of long-acting reversible contraceptive (LARC) methods "may deny some women reproductive control." They argue that such an outcome can be avoided by ensuring that programs promoting LARC methods "put the priorities, needs and preferences of individual women -- not the promotion of specific technologies -- first."

Abortion Does Not Contribute To Couples' Relationship Dissolution, Study Finds
There is a lack of reliable research comparing how a man and woman's relationship is affected when the woman terminates an unwanted pregnancy versus when she seeks an abortion but ends up carrying to term because she is unable to obtain the procedure. To assess the issue, researchers studied interviews with more than 850 women who sought abortions, including many who were beyond a facility's gestational limit and went on to give birth. The study found "no evidence that having an abortion causes relationship dissolution," but rather that "having an abortion appears to allow relationship dissolution to continue at its own pace, while having the baby seems to postpone the end of the relationship."