Medical and surgical abortions are serious medical decisions that present side effects and risks. Complications may include heavy bleeding, incomplete abortion, and infection. To manage your risk, confirm how far along you are in your pregnancy, make sure you do not have an ectopic pregnancy, and get tested and treated for STIs before having an abortion.
What is Medical Abortion?
The abortion pill (also referred to as medical or medication abortion) ends an early pregnancy that is 70 days or less. It is usually a combination of two drugs: mifepristone and misoprostol.
What Are the Risks of the Abortion Pill?
Medication abortion is expected to cause bleeding and cramping as part of the termination process, but sometimes serious bleeding and infection can occur. (In a very small number of cases, the FDA notes that this has led to death, so if you have taken the abortion pill, be sure to contact your doctor immediately if you experience difficulties.)
Other risks include:
- Digestive system discomfort
- An incomplete abortion, which may then require a surgical abortion
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
What is Surgical Abortion?
Surgical abortions remove the pregnancy from the uterus using dilation and curettage, vacuum aspiration, or other surgical instruments. These can be done later in pregnancy than medication abortions.
What Are the Risks of Surgical Abortion?
Risks of surgical abortion include:
- Internal damage to your uterus or cervix
- Excessive bleeding
- Reaction to the medications used
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
How Can I Manage My Risks?
Verify Your Pregnancy Duration
Because abortion types vary based on how far along a woman is in her pregnancy, it’s crucial that you verify how long you have been pregnant. You can do this with an ultrasound.
Make Sure Your Pregnancy Is Properly Located
You also should confirm that you do not have an ectopic pregnancy, as another type of procedure is needed to treat this dangerous condition. You could have an ectopic pregnancy without realizing it, and the FDA warns against taking the abortion pill in this case.
Having an ultrasound will check for this possibility and allow you to get medical attention if needed.
Get Testing and Treatment for STIs/STDs
Having an untreated STI during abortion could further increase your risk of pelvic inflammatory disease, leading to long-term complications such as infertility and pain.
Put your health first, and get testing and treatment for STDs before your abortion.
Free Services in Glenwood Springs, CO
Our medical professionals and lay counselors are here for you at our Glenwood Springs location and mobile unit.
Whether you need to assess the length of your pregnancy with an ultrasound, get STD testing and treatment, or ask questions about your unique situation and risks, we can help you with free and confidential services.
Request an appointment through our online form, call us at 970-945-5562, or text us at 970-707-8325 or 970-707-8334 (Spanish) today.