Make an Informed Decision About Abortion
You have just confirmed you are pregnant. Now what? Often, women think there is only one option for their unplanned pregnancy…abortion. It’s important to remember abortion is a serious medical procedure and you need to be fully informed about the procedures before you make an appointment.
Right now, you may feel like the world is against you. You’re thinking:
- The father is insisting on abortion, but I’m not sure.
- I’m not ready to be a parent or a mom.
- I can’t tell anyone I’m pregnant, especially my parents or close friends.
- There is no one I can talk to!
No wonder you feel trapped and confused. You are not alone. Many of our staff have been right where you are. We want you to know we are here to talk with you. We happen to be very good listeners!
You owe it to yourself to get the facts in order to make a fully-informed decision. We want to educate you on the types of abortion available, the potential side effects, and the potential risks to your future health. We’ve got the information you are looking for.
There are two types of abortion. How far along you are in your pregnancy determines what kind of abortion you have. It is necessary to have a lab-quality pregnancy test and ultrasound before making an appointment. The ultrasound is the only way to tell the date of conception and how far along your pregnancy is.
The abortion pill (RU486) is known as medication abortion. You can only have a medication abortion if your pregnancy has not progressed past nine or ten weeks. The farther along you are increases the risk of complications.
The abortion pill method is actually a series of two drugs taken over the course of several days. The first drug causes the lining of your uterus to thin so the embryo cannot stay implanted thereby ending the pregnancy. The second drug causes your uterus to cramp allowing your body to expel the pregnancy. It’s important to be in a private location because the procedure may cause severe bleeding and cramping, as well as nausea and possibly diarrhea.
If you’re further than nine or ten weeks along, the abortion pill method won’t work for you. You will need to have a surgical abortion. Surgical abortion involves dilating (opening) the cervix and placing a small suction tube into the uterus. Suction is used to remove the fetus and related pregnancy material from the uterus. It is an invasive procedure that must be performed in a medical clinic with medical staff.
There are different types of surgical abortion, depending on how far along your pregnancy is. These two are the main procedures:
Vacuum aspiration – between 9 and 15 weeks of pregnancy.
- The doctor will insert a speculum to open the vagina so she/he is able to see the cervix.
- A local anesthetic is applied to the cervix
- Suction (vacuum aspiration) is used to remove the fetus.
Dilatation and Evacuation – between 15 and 24 weeks of pregnancy.
- The doctor will first need to dilate your cervix. Sometimes, you need cervical preparation earlier before the abortion or possibly the day before.
- In addition to using a vacuum suction in your uterus, the doctor will also use forceps and other medical tools, including one called a curette to scrape the inside of your uterus.
- Some providers may use a medication, which you would get as a shot into your abdomen, to stop the fetal heartbeat before the procedure.
The farther along you are in your pregnancy often means the side effects are more intense and there is a greater possibility for long-term complications. You should always make sure the clinic knows how to handle any complications that might arise during your abortion procedure.
Possible Side Effects and Risks
Whether you’re considering the abortion pill or a surgical option, it’s important to remember abortion is a serious medical procedure. Like any other procedure, it comes with a variety of side effects, risks, and long-term impact.
Common side effects include:
- Excessive bleeding, including hemorrhaging
- Nausea and vomiting
- Possible infection that could lead to Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID)
- Damage to the cervix or a perforated uterus
It is also important to mention that many women experience emotional and psychological side effects after an abortion. Some women have an overwhelming sense of guilt, loss, and regret.
We Want To Be Your Safe Place
Let us be that safe place where you can share your concerns, dreams, and life situation. Ask as many questions as you need to so you can be confident with your final decision. We’re here for you!