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May 16, 2013

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Unprotected sex leads to more abortions

NEARLY one-third of women seeking abortion in Shanghai last year were not married, with 80 percent of them being single migrant women, the Shanghai Health and Family Planning Commission claimed yesterday.

Unprotected sex was the major reason for the unwanted pregnancy, with the commission saying the younger the age, the higher was the possibility of unprotected sex.

Lack of knowledge and improper use of contraceptives were the other reasons, said Dr Cheng Li'nan, director of the clinical research and training center at the Shanghai Family Planning Research Institute.

In another cause for concern, the number of cases of women having repeated abortions was also a cause for alarm. The worrying factor was the cases involved girls coming in at much younger age than before.

In 2001, the average age for abortion in Shanghai was 28 years old. By 2008, it was 27. While the latest age figures were not released, officials admitted it was getting younger. About 40 percent of women in the city aborted their first child, 30 percent went in again and an equal number had three or more abortions, raising health concerns.

"Short-term symptoms include infection, bleeding and uterine perforation, while the long-term worry could be irregular menstruation, chronic pelvic inflammation and even infertility," Cheng said. "We need more education among the youth about the importance of playing safe."


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