Different Types of Abortion

If you’re considering an abortion for your unplanned pregnancy, how far along you are will determine which types of abortion are available to you. Keep reading to learn more about your options and the potential risks associated with each one.

Medical Abortion

Medical abortion has several names—the abortion pill, medication abortion, and RU486. It describes the abortion procedure intended to end early pregnancies. It is available to women through the first 10 weeks of pregnancy in Massachusetts.

Medical abortion utilizes two drugs to terminate the pregnancy. Mifepristone prevents the womb from absorbing progesterone, a hormone necessary for pregnancy growth. This drug causes fetal demise.

Misoprostol causes cramping and contractions to expel the fetal remains.

Surgical Abortion

A few different types of surgical abortion are available at varying points in the pregnancy. Most utilize the same basic process of dilating the cervix and emptying the uterus using scraping and suction techniques.

Surgical abortion is legal in Massachusetts for pregnancies less than 24 weeks gestational age. After 10 weeks, surgical abortion is your only option for pregnancy termination.

Risks of Abortion

Any medication or medical procedure comes with certain risks, and abortion is no exception. It’s essential to be fully informed about any potential risks before deciding if abortion is the right option for you.

Medical Abortion Risks

According to Mayo Clinic, potential risks of medical abortion include:

  • 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 Risks

The following are the risks of surgical abortions. If you experience any of the following, you should seek immediate medical care:

  • Passing blood clots that are larger than a lemon for more than two hours
  • Bleeding that is heavy enough that you have to change your pad twice in one hour for two hours straight
  • Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
  • Fever
  • Pain or cramping that gets worse instead of better, especially after 48 hours
  • Pregnancy symptoms that persist after one week

Before Your Abortion

Before scheduling an abortion, knowing how far along you are is essential. An ultrasound will let you know the gestational age and alert you to potential complications like an ectopic pregnancy.

We offer onsite ultrasound referrals at our center, so contact us to schedule yours today.

Because we are pro-woman and a non-profit, we do not provide or refer for abortion services. We provide all of our services at no cost.