Adoption Medical Facts

Why do people chose International adoption?

There are numerous reasons why parents choose International adoption, but each case usually has a unique story attached to it. Some people have an affinity for a certain culture, some for humanitarian reasons,

Infectious Conditions

Infectious disease is a very common medical complaint for children adopted Internationally.

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Myths About International Adoption

by Julie Kink
HOPE Adoption & Family Services Int’l Inc.

Published April 2011
Edited May 2011

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Post-Arrival screening tests

It is suggested that families make an appointment with their child’s health care provider within one to two weeks after your arrival home. This will allow you to have their child examined for any contagious illnesses, evaluated for any conditions that need additional medical referrals (chronic problems), and allow the child’s physician to review the child’s immunization status.

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Risk Assessment .

LOW Risk

  • No wrrisome data
  • Enough social info to eliminate major risks (maternal alcohol, drug use, mental illness, major medical problems)
  • Growth & Development in ‘normal range’


  • One or more features likely to impact future   health
  • moderate growth or developmental delay – -Involuntary termination of parental rights
  • Small-for-gestational age
  • Known correctable conditions


  • Known medical diagnosis of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome or other irreparable genetic defects (ex.Down’s, achondroplasia)
  • SEVERE growth or developmental delay
  • Premature delivery < 30 weeks
  • Birth weight < 1000g
  • SEVERE growth or developmental delay

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Why Russian medical reports are the way they are ?

Frequently prospective adoptive parents (and their advising physicians) are amazed with  Russian medical report. I have seen medical reports that when translated into American medical terminology almost describes a devastated child. This information seems to conflict with what the adoption agency reported to the parents and even conflicts with the recent video tapes provided and even with personal contact that the parent may have had with the child when visiting the orphanage.

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Adoption Risks & Realities

No-one can predict the future of any adoption program in any particular  country. Referrals of children should be considered tentative until the adoption has been finalized and the child is home. Countries may unexpectedly close, laws and requirements may suddenly change causing delays or moratorium on all adoptions. (like what occurred in Romania). Other reasons, such as birth-parents changing their minds, referrals lost to in-country adoption, or children may become seriously ill, could result in the child no longer being available for adoption.

If all of the risks of IA were to become realities, no-one would choose to adopt internationally; however, many times  the risks do not always become realities and there are many families who have adopted healthy, happy,  flourishing children who are thriving under the loving care of their new parents.

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