Navigation Links
No Truth to Candidate's Claim That Rape Hinders Pregnancy, Experts Say
Date:8/21/2012

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Health experts are strongly refuting the assertion by a Republican Congressman that pregnancy is much more unlikely if a woman is raped.

"That is absolutely false," said Dr. George Attia, director of the division of reproductive endocrinology and infertility at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), which counts 56,000 members, also called the remarks "medically inaccurate, offensive and dangerous."

At issue is a comment made recently by Representative Todd Akin (R-Mo.) that women who are victims of "legitimate rape" rarely get pregnant. By "legitimate" Rep. Akin apparently means "forcible."

"If it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down," said Akin, who is in a race to unseat Missouri's Democratic senator in the upcoming election.

Akin's remarks have unleashed a flurry of condemnations, including from Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who has indicated that Akin should step out of the senatorial race, according to The New York Times.

While Akin's views on rape and pregnancy may come as a surprise to many, it is commonly cited in anti-abortion circles and stems at least partly from the writings of Dr. John Willke, former president of the National Right to Life Committee. He put forth the view in a book originally published in 1985.

Willke this week summarized his views to The New York Times, saying, "This [rape] is a traumatic thing -- she's, shall we say, she's uptight," he said of a woman who is being raped. "She is frightened, tight and so on. And sperm, if deposited in her vagina, are less likely to be able to fertilize. The tubes are spastic."

Willke also contended that pregnancy is unlikely because half of rapists "do not deposit sperm in the vagina," either because (he said) many rapists aren't fertile and many prefer anal intercourse.

But Attia said this theory simply "doesn't make sense." The primary determinant of whether a woman gets pregnant or not is the timing of her menstrual cycle during which the intercourse occurred.

"If the rape happened at a certain of time of the cycle when the woman is fertile, she is going to get pregnant, just like anybody," Attia said.

And, according to ACOG, in the United States each year, 10,000 to 15,000 abortions occur among women who are victims of rape or incest. "An unknown number of pregnancies resulting from rape are carried to term," they noted in the statement released Monday.

"A woman who is raped has no control over ovulation, fertilization, or implantation of a fertilized egg (i.e., pregnancy). To suggest otherwise contradicts basic biological truths," ACOG said in the statement.

"Any person forced to submit to sexual intercourse against his or her will is the victim of rape, a heinous crime," the statement continued. "There are no varying degrees of rape. To suggest otherwise is inaccurate and insulting and minimizes the serious physical and psychological repercussions for all victims of rape."

More information

There's more on conception and pregnancy at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office on Women's Health.

SOURCES: George R. Attia, M.D., director, Reproductive and Fertility Center, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; Aug. 20, 2012, New York Times; Aug. 20, 2012, statement, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists


'/>"/>
Copyright©2012 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Novel drug candidates offer new route to controlling inflammation
2. Presidential candidates should address childhood obesity and bullying, poll says
3. Doctors Detail High Costs of Fighting Malpractice Claims
4. Report using private health claims data shows prices are driving health spending growth
5. LawyersandSettlements.com Issues Report on Prostate Health Claim Lawsuits and Propecia Side Effect Litigation
6. Preventing Oral Diseases Begins in Pregnancy Claims Author in New eBook
7. E-Records Linked to Fewer Malpractice Claims
8. Parents work-life stress hinders healthy eating
9. HIV Drug Tenofovir Safe During Pregnancy, Study Suggests
10. Experts Offer Advice After Yankee Pitchers Trampoline Injury
11. NYU Langone experts present research, clinical advances at neurosurgeons meeting
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
No Truth to Candidate's Claim That Rape Hinders Pregnancy, Experts Say
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... , ... TopConsumerReviews.com recently awarded their highest five-star rating to Best Buy Eyeglasses, ... the United States and Canada wear eyeglasses. Once considered to be a purely functional ... a fashion statement. Even celebrities use glasses as a way of creating an iconic ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... , ... June 26, 2016 , ... Pixel Film Studios ... X. , "Film editors can give their videos a whole new perspective by using ... - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Levels contains over 30 Different ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Many women ... diagnosed with endometriosis. These women need a treatment plan to not only alleviate ... that can help for preservation of fertility and ultimately achieving a pregnancy. The ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... , ... June 25, 2016 , ... The temporary closing of Bruton Memorial Library on ... Observer , brings up a new, often overlooked aspect of head lice: the parasite’s ability ... fumigation is not a common occurrence, but a necessary one in the event that lice ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. Omkar Marathe earned his Bachelors ... Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in Internal Medicine at Scripps Green ... hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he had the opportunity to train ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016  Global Blood Therapeutics, Inc. (GBT) (NASDAQ: ... novel therapeutics for the treatment of grievous blood-based ... closing of its previously announced underwritten public offering ... public offering price of $18.75 per share. All ... by GBT. GBT estimates net proceeds from the ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... DUBLIN , June 24, 2016 ... and Markets has announced the addition of the ... their offering. ... products and provides an updated review, including its applications ... covering the total market, which includes three main industries: ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 2016 The Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy ... that would allow biopharmaceutical companies to more easily share ... formulary and coverage decisions, a move that addresses the ... The recommendations address restrictions in the sharing ... drug label, a prohibition that hinders decision makers from ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: