What are the different Types of Abortions?

The majority of abortion procedures happen within the first trimester of pregnancy (weeks 1 through 12). Having an abortion in the first trimester allows for more flexibility in regards to choosing the type of procedure method. The recommended abortion method is based on how many weeks you have been pregnant. Your pregnancy is calculated by counting the number of days since the last day of your last period. Certain procedures such as the medical abortion, will only be effective within the first 9 weeks of pregnancy.

4 Types of Abortions


Mifepristone and Misoprostol:

Mifepristone is the most common medication prescribed for medical abortions and works by blocking the hormone progesterone from developing in the lining of the uterus. After the development has been stopped, just like what was mentioned above misoprostol is prescribed in order to cause contractions, and expel the pregnancy.


Manual Vacuum Aspiration:

This procedure takes about 5 to 10 minutes and is performed safely in a clinic or medical office. Being that it is called “Manual Vacuum Aspiration,” a doctor will “manually” insert a thin tube into the uterus which will remove the uterine tissue out. Most women feel cramping while the tube is inserted into the cervix.


Machine Vacuum Aspiration:

Similar to the Manual Vacuum Asspiration the doctor will administer a numbing medicine in the cervix, followed by opening the cervical canal in order to insert the tube that will gently vacuum the tissue out of the uterus. As the tissue is removed the uterus will begin to contract and the pregnancy will be terminated.


Methotrexate & Misoprostol:

Methotrexate is typically administered by injection or shot, and breaks down the rapidly growing cells. After the injection, misoprostol is prescribed in order to cause the uterus to contract, and then expel the pregnancy. This combination can be used up to 9 weeks into pregnancy, however methotrexate is a medication that is rarely used for abortion in the United States.


At Stony Brook Women’s Health of Long Island we provide both surgical and medical abortion options. It’s our job to make sure you are fully informed about all your options before making a decision. Should any questions or concerns arise our staff or doctors are always available to provide support and answers.

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