News Daily Spot: Study indicates that fear of zika leads to Latin American women to seek abortion alternatives

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Study indicates that fear of zika leads to Latin American women to seek abortion alternatives

Pregnant women in some countries in Latin America have begun to seek abortion pills over the Internet in aid agencies nonprofit, because of fears about the effects of the virus Zika may have in the development of their fetuses, showed a new study, Reuters reported.

The research, published Wednesday as a letter in the New England Journal of Medicine, is the first to measure the response of pregnant warnings about Zika virus in countries where abortion is restricted or prohibited.

initially detected last year in Brazil, the current outbreak of Zika has been linked to more than 1,400 cases of microcephaly, a rare congenital malformation that can lead to serious developmental problems.

As Zika virus spreads through Latin America, several countries such as El Salvador, have recommended women to avoid pregnancy, even if they have limited access to contraception or abortion access.

The World Health Organization also recently suggested to couples who live in areas where infections have been reported with the virus Zika consider delaying pregnancy.

Dr. Abigail Aiken, an expert in reproductive health at the University of Texas, and colleagues analyzed requests for abortion services made to Women on Web, a non-profit organization that provides abortive drugs mifepristone and misoprostol and online consultations for women in countries where legal abortion is restricted.

The researchers compared requests for abortion performed after November 17, 2015, when the region received the first warning about the potential risk of congenital malformations associated with Zika, with the figures provided in the same group based on the data of the previous five years .

They found a statistically significant increase in requests for abortions in seven of eight countries where the virus circulates Zika, where abortion is restricted and the authorities have warned of the risks associated with infection during pregnancy.

Applications for abortion-inducing drugs doubled between November 2015 and March 2016 in Brazil, where abortion is prohibited except in cases of rape, when the mother's life is at risk or the fetus is not viable.

Orders increased by 35.6 percent in El Salvador, 36.1 percent in Costa Rica, 38.7 percent in Colombia, 75.7 percent in Honduras, 93.3 percent in Venezuela and 107.7 percent in Ecuador.

Abortion pills for Women on Web are offered only during the first trimester of pregnancy, which is usually too early to confirm whether the fetus has been affected by Zika virus. Investigators have said that signs of microcephaly may not appear until well into the second quarter, when abortion may be illegal in many countries.

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