Abortion, like every medical procedure, carries risks. These risks vary depending on the type of abortion that a woman receives. Read on to learn more about the risks associated with abortion so that you can make an informed decision regarding your healthcare choices.
Risks of Medical Abortion
A medical abortion uses the drugs mifepristone and misoprostol to end the pregnancy and expel the remains from the uterus. Medical abortions are limited to pregnancies under ten weeks gestation. The Mayo Clinic lists the following as risks of medical abortion:
- 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
Risks of Surgical Abortion
A surgical abortion is performed using surgical instruments that can open the cervix (the opening of the uterus.) The pregnancy is then removed with suction or with surgical tools.
A surgical abortion is a more invasive procedure, and can have increased risks. According to the National Institute of Health, the risks of surgical abortion are:
- Uterine perforation (accidentally putting a hole in the uterus with one of the instruments used)
- Excessive bleeding
- Infection of the uterus or fallopian tubes
- Scarring of the inside of the uterus
- Reaction to the medicines or anesthesia, such as problems breathing
- Not removing all the tissue, requiring another procedure
Special care should be taken to monitor a woman’s health after having a medical or surgical abortion, for signs and symptoms of these severe risks. A woman experiencing these symptoms should seek medical attention:
- Heavy Bleeding (soaking through more than two pads in an hour for two hours)
- Severe back or abdominal pain
- Fever lasting longer than 24 hours
- Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
Mental Health Risks
In addition to the physical risks associated with abortion, a woman’s mental health should be weighed when considering her pregnancy options. Some women struggle with their mental health after an abortion.
We Can Help
When faced with an unintended pregnancy, Hope Pregnancy Center can provide you with the information you need to make the right decision for you. Know that you don’t have to feel alone, we are here to support you. Contact us today to schedule a free appointment.