Abortion Side Effects: Surgery vs. Pill

The abortion procedure has come a long way since abortion was legalized in 1973, following Roe v. Wade. Now, women who do not wish to have a child can seek out a solution knowing that it will be safe. And while the abortion pill has become quite popular, the conventional abortion surgery is still common. Neither of these abortion procedures will have a lifetime impact, but they can each cause potential side effects. Read on to learn about the side effects possible in each procedure.


What is the Surgical Abortion Procedure?

When most people hear the word abortion, their minds immediately move to the surgical procedure. Possible through the second trimester (24 weeks) of the pregnancy, the surgical procedure does not involve any actual cutting.

First, the doctor issues a general anaesthetic, and then dilates the cervix. This provides the doctor with better access. Then, he will insert a suction cup, using it to remove the pregnancy tissue. Finally, the doctor will perform a sonogram to ensure the procedure was successful.


What is the Abortion Pill?

Rather than undergoing a physical procedure, some women prefer to take abortion pills. This medication is available for most women through the first nine weeks of pregnancy.

While in the Long Island abortion clinic, the patient takes Mifepristone pills. These pills stop the growth of the pregnancy, removing the embryo from the uterine wall. Next, the patient takes Misoprostol at home, which allows the woman to expel the embryo.


Abortion Side Effects

Regardless of the selected procedure, abortions are bound to cause some side effects. While these side effects are an expected part of the procedure, they may be surprising for patients.


Surgical Abortion Side Effects

After a surgical abortion procedure, light bleeding is quite normal. In fact, women often bleed more during the period than a surgical abortion. This will generally last for several days, up to about three weeks, for surgical abortions.

Following an abortion, abdominal pain is also fairly common. These cramping feelings may persist for approximately two weeks. To prevent intense cramping, refrain from having sexual intercourse for about two weeks.

Women will likely experience their first post-abortion period between four-eight weeks after the procedure.

Most women who receive abortions do not take several days off from work or school to recover. Most are able to return to normal activities within one to two days.

If you experience more severe side effects, or have these feelings for a longer period of time, then contact a doctor immediately.


Abortion Pill Side Effects

As with other medications, the abortion pill can potentially have side effects. These side effects include nausea, fevers, chills, headaches, diarrhea, and vomiting.

Bleeding should also be expected after a abortion. Bleeding from a medical abortion is generally heavier than the surgical procedure, but should still not be extremely heavy.

It is also common for women to feel faint or fatigued following the procedure.

To address these side effects, some women receive pain medication. However, it’s possible to mitigate these side effects with medication.

If you did not experience any bleeding at all, then it is possible the abortion failed. To complete the abortion, you may need a surgical procedure.

For about two weeks following the time when the abortion pill was administered, patients may have heavy vaginal bleeding.


Shared Side Effects

Neither procedure has a significant effect on a woman’s potential to become pregnant again. So, women who plan to have a child in the future can still receive a abortion procedure. Only serious complications might prevent a woman’s ability to have children in the future.

And, putting the expected feelings of discomfort aside, the abortion procedure is generally safe. In fact, 95% of procedures do not have any complications.


Medical vs Surgical: Which is Better?

Each individual woman’s tolerance for pain-like sensations is different. So, this choice is entirely personal, for each person to make on her own. Regardless, both procedures are very safe, and unlikely to cause serious complications.


Abortions on Long Island at Stony Brook Women’s Health

At Stony Brook Women’s Health, we make every effort to create a friendly and safe environment for patients. We do our best to answer patients’ questions, and enable them to make the right decisions for themselves. If you have any questions about these procedures, contact us.