Terminology for early pregnancy loss must be changed

BMJ 1998; 317 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.317.7165.1081 (Published 17 October 1998) Cite this as: BMJ 1998;317:1081
  1. David J R Hutchon, Consultant obstetrician and gynaecologist.,
  2. Sandra Cooper, Chair of the Miscarriage Association.
  1. Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Memorial Hospital, Darlington, Durham DL3 6HX

    Editorial p 1028

    EDITOR —Miscarriage is distressing, giving rise to a range of emotional experiences for both the woman and her partner. The aim of medical and nursing staff must be to reduce distress, but the distress may be increased by staff taking the wrong approach or using inappropriate terminology. The lay public tend to interpret an “abortion” as a termination of pregnancy.1 We advise that when women are counselled about miscarriage the word abortion should be avoided.

    The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists has …

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