Surgical abortion is a more complicated procedure than a medical abortion and is performed later in a woman’s pregnancy. 

Typically, the procedure takes five to ten minutes, but it can take longer when you factor in prep time and any possible complications. This article will walk you through the different surgical abortion procedures and what you can expect.

What You Should Know About Surgical Abortion

A surgical abortion procedure ends a viable pregnancy with a combination of medication and surgical tools. There are two types of surgical abortion methods, which are the following:

  • Dilation and curettage (D & C): The medical provider uses medication or surgical instruments to dilate the cervix. Next, they use a gentle suctioning technique or a curette to remove the pregnancy tissue from the uterus.
  • Dilation and evacuation (D & E): This procedure uses medical instruments and vacuum aspiration to remove the pregnancy tissue.

Every woman recovers differently from a surgical abortion procedure, and there are risks you should be aware of, which include: 

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

If you believe you are suffering from complications or feel otherwise unwell after a surgical abortion, you must seek medical attention immediately. Regardless of how you feel after the procedure, you should always seek follow-up care from your medical provider to ensure you are healthy.

And before any abortion, you should have a physical and receive an obstetric ultrasound to check for viability, your pregnancy’s gestational age, and the location of the pregnancy. These details will help to protect your health and confirm whether you are eligible for a surgical abortion.

Need Some Additional Support?

Deciding what to do when you have an unplanned pregnancy can be daunting. La Luz Women’s Center is here to discuss your options and provide no-cost and confidential services such as medical grade pregnancy tests, limited STD/STI testing and treatment, as well as limited ultrasounds. These are all tools for you to use in order to make an informed and empowered choice.
Contact us today to book an appointment. We’re here for you!