This woman is wondering what are the risks of abortion?

Did the pregnancy test say “positive?” Are you thinking, “It’s got to be wrong. I’m not supposed to be pregnant now. Pregnancy is not part of the plan!”

There’s nothing easy about discovering an unexpected pregnancy, but you have options. One of those options is abortion. Make sure you understand the side effects and risks of abortion while looking at the long-term effects as well.

Are There Different Types of Abortions?

There are two main methods of abortion, medical and surgical. The type of abortion you have is determined by how long you’ve been pregnant (gestational age).

Medical Abortion

If you have been pregnant for 70 days or less (10 weeks and 0 days) since the first day of your last menstrual period, you are eligible for a medical abortion. 

The abortion pill is the most common medical abortion. It’s medical because it uses two powerful drugs to terminate a pregnancy. 

Every pregnancy needs a hormone called progesterone to thrive and grow. The first pill in the abortion pill method blocks the uterus from absorbing progesterone. As a result, the pregnancy can’t survive and is terminated. 

The second drug causes contractions to expel the pregnancy from your body. Expect heavy bleeding at this time, too. 

Risks of a Medical Abortion

According to the Mayo Clinic, a “medical abortion is a major decision with emotional and psychological consequences.”

The Mayo Clinic lists these risks:

  • Incomplete abortion may need to be followed by surgical abortion
  • Heavy and prolonged bleeding
  • Infection
  • Fever
  • Digestive system discomfort

Surgical Abortion

Again, the type of surgical abortion you have is determined by how many weeks you’ve been pregnant. In your first trimester, you could have a vacuum aspiration procedure. This abortion method uses suction to remove your pregnancy through a vacuum tube.

In your second trimester, you will most likely have a dilation and curettage (D&C). Your cervix needs to be dilated (opened) for the pregnancy to pass through. Suction and an instrument that scrapes the lining, placenta, and pregnancy tissue from the uterus are used. 

Risks of a Surgical Abortion

The Mayo Clinic lists these as possible risks of surgical abortion:

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

Are You Certain You’re Pregnant?

Experts say up to 20% of known pregnancies end in a natural miscarriage. The percentage could be even higher because many miscarriages occur before a woman realizes she’s pregnant. You can get a positive pregnancy test for days or even weeks after a miscarriage. 

Do You Know How Long You’ve Been Pregnant?

Knowing the number of days you’ve been pregnant is important when determining whether you have a medical or surgical abortion. Are you sure you know when you got pregnant? The exact time when a woman can get pregnant each month fluctuates, so knowing the date can be tricky. 

Ultrasound Gives You The Answers

An ultrasound exam is the only way to determine if you have miscarried or your pregnancy is growing. Plus, an ultrasound tells you how far along your pregnancy is.  

Get a no-cost ultrasound at Pathways PRC. After confirming your pregnancy, we can talk about you, your current situation, and your future plans. Contact us to schedule an appointment. Get the answers you need to your questions about abortion and all of your other options.

Difficult Pathways often lead to Beautiful Destinations.