Surgical Abortion: 6-16 Weeks
Surgical abortions between 6-16 weeks after the first day of your last menstrual period are called suction abortion or vacuum aspiration. During a suction abortion, a vaginal speculum is inserted to spread and hold open your vaginal walls. A numbing solution is administered to your cervix. Then, a tenaculum (a surgical instrument that resembles a pair of scissors with sharp pointed hooks at the end) is used to hold the cervix open so that it can be stretched wide enough by cone shaped rods to insert a cannula (a long plastic tube connected to a suction device). The cannula will then suction out the contents of the uterus. This procedure usually takes 10-15 minutes to complete, however, recovery may require you to stay for up to 5 hours.
Surgical Abortion: 16-24 Weeks
Surgical abortions between 16 and 24 weeks after the first day of your last menstrual period will require a Dilation and Evacuation (D&E) procedure. Usually 24 hours before a D&E, the abortion provider will insert laminaria or a synthetic dilator inside the cervix. At the time of the procedure, cone-shaped rods of increasing size are used to stretch your cervix to prepare you for the cannula. Depending on the gestational age, some providers may deliver a shot with a long needle through your abdomen to cause fetal demise before the procedure begins. The cannula is inserted to begin removing the fetus from the lining of the uterus. The lining is scraped with a curette (a surgical instrument designed for scraping biological tissue or debris) to remove any residual fetal parts. If the fetus is larger, forceps may be used to remove larger parts. Some providers prefer to crush the skull for easier extraction. This surgical abortion normally takes about 30 minutes, with extended recovery time.
If you are considering a surgical abortion, schedule your FREE pregnancy options consultation right away – see our contact information below. You will receive a comprehensive look at all your pregnancy options including abortion risks, possible side effects, and important questions to ask the abortion clinic or abortion provider so you can make a decision with confidence. We’re here for you!
We are not an abortion provider or abortion referral agency, so we do not benefit financially from your decision.