Pregnancy Rate in U.S. Drops By 15% During 1990-2010 Period


A new study by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed that the rate of pregnancy and abortion in the United States has declined to a record low.

CDC’s data shows that the pregnancy rate for women declined in 2010 to 98.7 per 1,000 women aged 15–44, which is a record low for the 1976–2010 period. This represents 15% decrease from the 1990 peak. In 2010, the abortion rate was a record low.

From 1990 to 2010, the decline in the overall pregnancy rate included reductions in birth and abortion rates, with the percent decline greater for abortions than births over this period.

There were fluctuation in fetal loss rates, 3% lower in 2010 than in 1990. The estimated number of pregnancies fell to 6.155 million in 2010, the lowest number since 1986.

In 2010, pregnancies included 3.999 million live births, 1.103 million induced abortions, and 1.053 million fetal losses, according to CDC.

Pregnancy rates for women under age 30 were lower in 2010 compared with 1990. The largest percent decline occurring among teenage subgroups, including a 67% reduction for teenagers aged 14 and under, and a 50% reduction for teenagers aged 15–19.

Pregnancy rates were highest for women aged 25–29 followed by women aged 20–24, with declines of 12% and 27%, respectively, since 1990. Rates for women aged 30 and over increased over the 20-year period, with women aged 40 and over having the largest percent increase. However, rates for women in their 30s have declined since 2006–2007, CDC said in a statement.

Moreover, the study shows that pregnancy rates were highest for non-Hispanic black women, with 135.1 per 1,000 women aged 15–44, and lowest for non-Hispanic white women. Hispanic women had the highest birth rate in 2010, while non-Hispanic black women had the highest abortion rate.

During the 1990–2010 period, pregnancy rates dropped more for non-Hispanic black and Hispanic women compared to non-Hispanic white women.

All groups had larger percent reductions in abortion than birth rates over the 1990–2010 period, according to the study.