What are the reasons that people decide to abort a foetus with down’s syndrome?

Medically Reviewed by Checkmark Medically Reviewed By: Dr. Sravanthi Sunkaraneni

Parents’ reasons for terminating a pregnancy on grounds of foetal anomaly may include the emotional and financial cost of raising a disabled child. Another reason could be the negative impact it can have on the parents’ ability to care for their existing children. Having a child that will need constant medical intervention and may live in pain is disheartening for parents.

A 1981 study of parents of down’s syndrome children in South Wales surveyed parents’ attitudes toward abortion and euthanasia for severe congenital handicaps. Out of the 78 parents who responded, 60 approved abortion for a handicapped fetus. In their responses, the parents considered the degree of handicap as the most important factor in their decisions. However, according to the researchers, social class is the only statistically significant variable.

The National Down Syndrome Cytogenetic Register for England and Wales states that about 90% of pregnancies with a prenatal diagnosis of trisomy 21 (Down’s Syndrome) are terminated. Though not every parent chooses to abort a foetus with down syndrome. It is a personal choice of a person. There have been cases of people with down syndrome who lived a long and sustainable life, with minimum support.

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Disclaimer
Medical Science is an ever evolving field. We strive to keep this page updated. In case you notice any discrepancy in the content, please inform us at [email protected]. You can further read our Correction Policy here. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment because of something you have read on or accessed through this website or it's social media channels. Read our Full Disclaimer Here for further information.

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