There are two types of abortion: medical and surgical.

Both come with risks and side effects to consider before making an informed decision. Keep reading to learn more about each type and the key facts you should know.

You can also visit us to discuss your options and receive no-cost early pregnancy services. Schedule an appointment at Choices Family Resource Center today.

Medical Abortion

Also known as the abortion pill, medical abortion is a combination of two drugs, mifepristone and misoprostol. The FDA has only approved medical abortion drugs for use within the first ten weeks of gestation.

Mifepristone is usually taken in a medical office or clinic. Its purpose is to block progesterone, a hormone necessary for the pregnancy to continue. This drug will cause the pregnancy to end.

Misoprostol is taken one or two days later, usually at home. It will cause abdominal cramping and vaginal bleeding to expel the pregnancy and related tissue from the uterus.

In addition to vaginal bleeding and abdominal cramping, the side effects of a medical abortion include nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, diarrhea, and headache.

The risks of medical abortion include incomplete abortion, an ongoing pregnancy, heavy and prolonged bleeding, infection, fever, and digestive system discomfort.

In the case of an incomplete abortion, there may need to be a follow-up surgical procedure.

Surgical Abortion

A surgical abortion occurs when a woman is too far along for a medical abortion or if complications arise. Women can also elect a surgical procedure over a medical abortion.

One type of surgical abortion is a dilation & curettage abortion or D&C. A physician uses medical instruments or drugs to dilate (open) the cervix. Then, they will scrape or use suction to remove the pregnancy and tissue from the uterus.

In the later stages of pregnancy, a dilation & evacuation or D&E procedure uses more tools, such as forceps, to remove the pregnancy.

Side effects can last a few days and include mild cramping, spotting, or light bleeding.

The risks include uterine perforation (poking a hole in the uterus), damage to the cervix, scar tissue on the uterine wall, and infection.

Need More Information?

Before choosing an abortion, you need some questions answered. First, are you pregnant?

Once you confirm your pregnancy, you need an ultrasound to measure your gestational age (how far along you are) and verify whether your pregnancy is progressing within the uterus.

Choices Family Resource Center can provide a pregnancy test. If it’s positive, we will offer a no-cost ultrasound. We can also answer questions about abortion, as well as your other options.

Make an appointment with us today! We care about you.