Both medical and surgical abortion carry associated risks to the woman. Understanding these risks can help you weigh your decision to determine if abortion is right for you.
To better understand all your options regarding the outcome of your pregnancy, including abortion methods, schedule a free options counseling appointment with A Pregnancy Center and Clinic. You deserve the information to make a confident decision.
A medical abortion uses the drugs mifepristone and misoprostol to terminate a pregnancy. Like any medication, these drugs have side effects. The side effects of the drugs used in medical abortion include:
- Heavy vaginal bleeding
- Nausea and vomiting
In addition to the commonly associated side effects of medical abortion, women obtaining medical abortion may also experience the following risks.
- Incomplete abortion, which may need to be followed by surgical abortion
- An ongoing pregnancy if the procedure doesn’t work
- Heavy and prolonged bleeding
- Digestive system discomfort
The risk of complications from medical abortion should be taken seriously as they can have long term effects. A woman should reach out to her provider immediately if she has any of the following signs or symptoms following an abortion:
- Heavy bleeding — soaking two or more pads an hour for two hours
- Severe abdominal or back pain
- Fever lasting more than 24 hours
- Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
During a surgical abortion, the provider uses surgical tools to open a woman’s cervix and remove the embryo or fetus and the remaining pregnancy tissue. Commonly, a woman will experience localized pain, light cramping, and light bleeding after the procedure.
Risks of surgical abortion can include:
- Uterine perforation (a small tear in your uterus)
- Uterine infection
- Uterine bleeding
If any of these signs or symptoms of complications are experienced after a surgical abortion, a woman should reach out immediately to her provider:
- Abdominal (belly) pain
- Heavy bleeding
- Severe cramps
- Unusual or bad-smelling discharge, the fluid that leaks from your vagina