Despite what you’ve heard, abortion procedures do come with side effects and serious potential risks. The National Institute of Health writes that women considering abortion have a “desire for information on all possible complications, including rare risks.” The team at A Hope Center believes you deserve the information you’re looking for. 

Before An Abortion

Have you confirmed your pregnancy? Even though you may have gotten a positive result on an at-home pregnancy test, there’s still a lot more to know. 

If you’re considering abortion, you need to know if the pregnancy is growing or you’ve had a miscarriage, if it’s in the right location, and how many days you’ve been pregnant. Get this information with an ultrasound. A Hope Center offers free and confidential first-trimester ultrasounds, so make an appointment right away. 

Abortion Procedures

There are two main types of abortion procedures: medical and surgical. Which method you qualify for is determined by the number of days you’ve been pregnant (the gestational age). If you’re 70 days or less, you will most likely have a medical abortion. A longer pregnancy will require a surgical abortion and getting an ultrasound will verify how long you’ve been pregnant.

Medical Abortion

You may have heard about the abortion pill method which is a type of medical abortion. Calling it the abortion pill is misleading, because you don’t take one pill and the abortion is complete. You take a series of two very powerful drugs over a 24 to 48 hour period. 

With pregnancy, a hormone called progesterone is needed to thicken the lining of the uterus for a fertilized egg to attach. The first drug in the abortion pill method blocks the womb from absorbing progesterone which thins the lining of the uterus and ends the pregnancy, while the second drug causes the uterus to contract to expel the pregnancy tissue.

Side Effects and Potential Risks of Medical Abortion:

According to the Mayo Clinic, these are the side effects and potential risks of this abortion method:

  • Incomplete abortion, which may need to be followed by surgical abortion
  • An ongoing unwanted pregnancy if the procedure doesn’t work
  • Heavy and prolonged bleeding
  • Infection
  • Fever
  • Digestive system discomfort

Surgical Abortion

Surgical abortions are performed in-clinic and require anesthesia, dilation (opening) of the cervix, and various medical instruments. The longer you’ve been pregnant, the more invasive the surgery is. If you’ve been pregnant between 11 and 13 weeks, you’ll have a D & C (dilation and curettage) using a vacuum and scraping tool to remove the pregnancy. 

Past 13 weeks, the doctor will need to dilate your cervix further due to the size of the fetus.  They will perform a D & E (dilation and evacuation) and in addition to the vacuum and scraping tool, instruments like forceps are used to make sure each part of the pregnancy tissue is removed.

Side Effects and Potential Risks of Surgical Abortion:

According to the Mayo Clinic, these are potential risks of surgical abortion:

  • Perforation of the uterus
  • Damage to the cervix
  • Scar tissue on the uterine wall
  • Infection
  • Heavy bleeding
  • Cramping

Is Abortion Right For You?

As you can see, any type of abortion is a serious medical decision. Get the information you need before you make your abortion appointment. At A Hope Center, we’ll confirm your pregnancy with free and confidential pregnancy testing and an ultrasound. 

Our team is here to support you and answer all of your questions, so schedule your appointment today. Walk-in appointments are available.