What Are the Risks of Abortion?

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It seems like the topic of abortion is always in the news. Although pro-abortion supporters talk about the right to have an abortion, they never talk about the procedures, side effects, and risks.

Abortion is a serious medical procedure. Any time you take something out of your body, there are side effects and risks. If you’re considering abortion, you have the right to know everything that’s involved beforehand. Here is what medical experts have to say.

Types of Abortion

There are basically two types of abortion, medication (or medical) and surgical. Which type of abortion you have is determined by how far along your pregnancy is. To determine the number of weeks you’ve been pregnant, you need to have an ultrasound. At Mosaic PHC, we offer free and confidential ultrasound imaging.

Medication Abortion

According to the Mayo Clinic, “Having a medical abortion is a major decision with emotional and psychological consequences. If you’re considering this procedure, make sure you understand what it entails, side effects, possible risks, complications, and alternatives.”

The medical (medication) abortion method involves taking a combination of powerful drugs to end your pregnancy. It’s also referred to as the abortion pill, RU 486, or a self-managed abortion. You can only have a medication abortion if you are under ten weeks pregnant.

The first drug is called mifepristone (Mifeprex®). Your body needs a hormone called progesterone to help the implanted embryo grow once fertilization has occurred. Mifepristone stops the production of progesterone causing the lining of your uterus to thin ending your pregnancy.

The second drug, Misoprostol, is taken hours or even days after the first drug. You need to take this drug at home to be near a bathroom.

Misoprostol causes your body to cramp and contract to expel your pregnancy.

The Risks of a Medication Abortion

The Mayo Clinic lists these as the potential risks of medical abortion:

  • 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

Depending on how far along you are in your pregnancy determines which type of surgical abortion procedure you can have.

Dilation and Curettage (D&C)

According to the Mayo Clinic, during a D&C abortion procedure, “your doctor uses small instruments or a medication to open (dilate) your cervix — the lower, narrow part of your uterus. Your doctor then uses a surgical instrument called a curette to remove uterine tissue. Curettes used in a D&C can be sharp or use suction.”

The risks associated with a D&C abortion procedure include:

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

Dilation and Evacuation (D&E)

In an overview from My Health Alberta, a D & E is described as, “Dilation and evacuation (D&E) is done in the second trimester of pregnancy. It usually includes a combination of vacuum aspiration, dilation and curettage (D&C), and the use of surgical instruments (such as forceps).”

The risks associated with a D&E abortion procedure include:

  • Injury to the uterine lining or cervix
  • A hole in the wall of the uterus (uterine perforation)
  • Infection
  • Moderate to severe bleeding (hemorrhage)
  • Tissue remaining in the uterus
  • Blood clots

Your Next Step

Before you make an appointment with an abortion clinic, get a pre-abortion screening from Mosaic PHC. We offer free and confidential pregnancy testing to confirm your pregnancy. If you get a positive test result, you can receive a free and confidential ultrasound screening.

You’ll find out if your pregnancy is viable and how far along you are.

We’re ready to help you make this difficult decision. Don’t go it alone. Make an appointment today.