Post-Abortion Survivor Syndrome: Signs And Symptoms
Clinical observations indicated that those psychiatric patients who survived when a preborn sibling died were adversely affected by the experience. It seemed that being a survivor of a pregnancy loss, particularly abortion, contributed to psychiatric illnesses. Data was collected from a sample of 293 adults - 98 patients and 195 counseling trainees. A self-report questionnaire with visual analogue, rating, and descriptive questions was used to ascertain the extent of common psychiatric symptoms. These were analyzed to determine if there were any significant associations with various types of pregnancy outcome. Correlations and stepwise regression analyses demonstrated a cluster of existential symptoms for those surviving when their preborn siblings were aborted. The symptom expressed by the subjects in the study that was most closely associated with abortions in the first pregnancy of their mothers was, “I feel I don’t deserve to be alive.” There were different and more loosely clustered symptoms found in patients whose mother miscarried. Conclusion: there is a reasonably definable syndrome of symptoms in patients associated with the abortion of their sibling, which we have termed, the Post Abortion Survivor Syndrome.
Baider, L., Peretz, T., Hadani, P,E,, Perry, S., Avramov, R., & De-Nour, A.T. (2000). Transmission of response to trauma? Second generation Holocaust survivors' reaction to cancer. American Journal of Psychiatry, 157(6), 904-910.
Barocas, H., & Barocas, C. (1973). Manifestations of concentration camp effects on the second generation. American Journal of Psychiatry. 130, 820-821.
Bolton, D., O'Ryan, D., Udwin, O., Boyle, S., & Yule, W. (2000). The long-term psychological effects of a disaster experienced in adolescence: II: general psychopathology. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 41(4), 513-523.
Bramsen, I., & van der Ploeg, H.M. (1999). Fifty years later: the long-term psychological adjustment of ageing World War II survivors. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 100(5), 350-358.
Chodoff, P. (1963). Late effects of the concentration camp syndrome. Archives of General Psychiatry, 8(4), 323-333.
Danieli, Y. (1981). Families of survivors of the Nazi Holocaust. Some short- and long-term effects. In: Spielberger, C.D., et al., ed. Stress and Anxiety. Vol. 8. New York: McGraw Hill, 405-421.
Kaminer H, & Lavie P. (1994). Sleep and dreams in well adjusted and less adjusted Holocaust survivors. In: Stroebe, M.D., Stroebe, W., Hansson, R, eds. Handbook of bereavement. New York: Cambridge University Press, 331-345.
Kent, I., Greenwood, R.D., Louken, J., & Nicholls, W. (1978). Emotional sequelae of elective abortion. BC Medical Journal, 20, 118-119.
Kersting, A., & Ohrmann, P. (2009). Neural activation of underlying acute grief in women after the loss of an unborn child. American Journal of Psychiatry, 166, 1402-1410
Kestenberg, J.S. (1990). Survivor-parents and their children. In: Bergmann, M.S., & Jucovy, M.E., eds. Generations of the holocaust. New York: Columbia University Press, 83-102.
Krell, R. (1979). Holocaust families: The survivors and their children. Comprensive Psychiatry, 20, 560-568.
Miller A. (1995). The drama of being a child. 2nd ed. London: Virago.
Ney, P.G. (1983). A consideration of abortion survivors. Child Psychiatry Human Development, 13(3) 168-179
Ney, P.G. (1988). Transgenerational child abuse, Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 18, 151-168.
Ney, P.G. (1989). Child mistreatment: Possible reasons for its transgenerational transmission. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 34(6), 594-601.
Ney P.G., Fung T., & Wickett A.R. (1993) Relationships between induced abortion and child abuse and neglect: four studies. Pre and Perinatal Psychology Journal, 8(1), 43-63.
Ney, P.G., Fung, T, & Wickett, A.R. (1993). Child Neglect: The precursor to child abuse. Pre- and Perintal Psychology Journal, 8(2), 95-112.
Ney, P.G., Fung, T., Wickett, A.R., & Beaman-Dodd, C. (1994). Effects of pregnancy loss on women's health. Social Science and Medicine. 38(9), 1193-2000.
Ney, P.G., & Peeters, M.A. (1996). Abortion survivors. Victoria, B.C.: Pioneer Publishing.
Ney, P.G., Ball, K., Sheils, C. (2010). Results of group psychotherapy for abuse, neglect, and pregnancy loss. Current Women's Health Review 6(4), 332-340.
Niederland, W.G. (1968) Clinical observations on the 'Survivor Syndrome'. International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 49, 313-15.
North, C.S., Nixon, S.J., Shariat, S., Mallonne, S., McMillen, J.C., Spitznagel, E.L., & Smith, E.M. (1999). Psychiatric disorders among survivors of the Oklahoma City bombing. Journal of the American Medical Association. 282(8), 755-762.
Poltawska, W. (1989). And I am afraid of my dreams. New York: Hippocrene.
Robinson S, Hemmendinger J, Netanel R, Rapaport, M., Zilberman, L., & Gal, A. (1994). Retraumatization of Holocaust survivors during the Gulf War and SCUD missile attacks on Israel. British Journal of Medical Psychology, 67(4), 353-362.
Rowland-Klein, D., & Dunlop, R. (1998). The transmission of trauma across generations: identification with parental trauma in children of Holocaust survivors. Australia and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 32(3), 358-369.
Wardi, D. (1992). Memorial candles: children of the holocaust. (Goldblum. N, trans.) London: Tavistock/Routledge.
Wenzel, T., Griengl, H., Stompe T, Mirzaei, S., & Kieffer, W. (2000). Psychological disorders in survivors of torture: exhaustion, impairment and depression. Psychopathology, 33, 292-296.