The Severity of Post-abortion Stress in Spontaneous, Induced and Forensic Medical Center Permitted Abortion in Shiraz, Iran, in 2018

Sedighe Alipanahpour, Mahnaz Zarshenas, Fatemeh Ghodrati, Marzieh Akbarzadeh


Background: Abortion and loss of pregnancy in the first trimester may affect maternal mortality and morbidity. This study aimed to determine the severity of post-abortion stress in spontaneous abortion, induced abortion, and Forensic Medical Center (FMC) referral abortions immediately after abortion and after 1 month of follow-up in Shiraz, Iran, in 2018.

Materials and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted on 104 mothers selected through convenience sampling method in 2018. The data collection tools included a demographic characteristics questionnaire and the Mississippi Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (M-PTSD) Scale that were filled out by mothers immediately and 1 month after the abortion. Data were analyzed using one-way ANOVA and post-hoc LSD test in SPSS software. Moreover, p < 0.05 was considered as statistically significant.

Results: The mean (SD) of post-traumatic stress scores was 83.87 (18.35) and 77.40 (9.88) in spontaneous abortion, 82.28 (13.27) and 75.71 (14.73) in FMC permitted abortions, and 86.66 (10.10) and 74.98 (12.99) in induced abortions immediately and 1 month after abortion, respectively. Stress was reduced in the three groups of mothers, after one month of severe value. The score for frequency of stress was 3.10% in FMC-permitted abortions and 5.10% in induced abortions; moreover, no stress was observed in the spontaneous abortion cases.

Conclusions: Stress was gradually reduced over time. The level of PTSD was lower after 1 month in women who had experienced spontaneous abortion. Given that 1 month after abortion, women are still often moderately stressed, follow-up care, and appropriate counseling for these women are necessary.


Abortion, forensic, post-traumatic, spontaneous, stress

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