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

ecause (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


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