Are you wondering about the abortion process in Oswego, Illinois? Or wherever you are, is this something on your mind at this time? Is it because you think you might be pregnant, and you just can’t see that working right now? Maybe your home pregnancy test came out positive, but you think or hope it may not be true. Even the possibility of an unplanned pregnancy causes concern. Whether in Oswego or any place else in the western suburbs, we understand the difficulty of your situation. We want to assure you that you have options to consider for the abortion process, and if you are seeking more information, Avenue Women’s Center is here to provide it.
Avenue Women’s Center has worked with women confronting an unplanned pregnancy in Chicagoland for thirty-six years. We understand the challenges you are facing. This is a road no one ought to travel alone. Our experienced client advocates are committed to meet you with nonjudgmental care and compassion. We will walk with you as you explore and assess your options to determine the course that is the best for you, and we will stay with you through the experience, whatever your decision. In this article, we will share some initial information about the abortion process. After you have finished reading it, we encourage you to call us as your first step in the journey that is ahead for you. Over the years our clients have appreciated the sensitive and attentive assistance they have received through Avenue Women’s Center. We hope you will allow us to serve you as well.
Abortion Process Basics
There are two basic types of abortions: Medication Abortion (also known as Medical Abortion) and Surgical Abortion.
Different procedures are used depending on how far along the pregnancy has progressed.
A medication abortion is available only through the first full nine weeks of pregnancy. It is not allowed past the beginning of week ten, 70 days after the first day of the last menstrual period. A sonogram (ultrasound) is required to accurately date the pregnancy.
RU-486, “the abortion pill,” is used for a medication abortion. This process actually utilizes two separate drugs taken in succession. The medications are available only from a licensed doctor, and at least two visits to the doctor’s office or clinic are required.
The first drug, Mifeprex (mifepristone), is given at the doctor’s office during the first visit. Mifeprex blocks the production of necessary pregnancy hormones. As a result, the pregnancy is stopped from growing. At this time a woman is typically given the second drug, Misoprostol , to be taken at home about 48 hours later according to the doctor’s instructions. The purpose of the second medication is to cause uterine contractions which will expel the pregnancy from the uterus, completing the abortion. Most women will experience intense cramping and heavy bleeding, more than a normal menstrual period. This may take several hours or as long as a few days. Potential side effects may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and possible infection.
The woman must return to the doctor’s office, usually about two weeks after taking the Misoprostol, where she will be examined to make certain the uterus has been completely emptied with no tissue remaining behind. If it is discovered that any tissue does remain, a surgical procedure may be needed to remove it.
A surgical abortion is performed in-clinic and is typically completed in one visit. The most commonly used abortion process in the first trimester (up to about 15 weeks) is the “vacuum aspiration” or “suction” abortion. For this procedure a woman will receive some pain medication, perhaps local numbing of the cervix. Small rods called dilators may be used to stretch the opening of the cervix. A small tube attached to a suction device is inserted into the uterus and the pregnancy material is removed through the tube.
At 14 to 16 weeks, the surgical abortion process is called dilation and evacuation (D & E). For this procedure, a woman will probably need to go to the clinic the day before to have laminaria or another type of dilator inserted into her cervix to prepare for the surgery. The D & E abortion process is similar to the suction abortion. In addition, however, the abortion provider will utilize other surgical tools to aid in the abortion as well. A metal instrument called a curette, with a looped end shaped somewhat like a spoon or a scoop, is used to scrape the inside of the uterus. Forceps may be used to remove larger parts. With the suction instrument, the doctor should make sure no tissue remains. Pain medication or anesthesia is also provided for this procedure.
After a surgical abortion most women will be given an antibiotic to prevent infection. She should plan for a few days for physical recovery, depending on how far along the pregnancy had progressed. She may experience a day or two of cramping, and vaginal bleeding may continue for 7 to 10 days.
Although generally considered safe, as with any surgical procedure there are some risks associated with abortion: allergic reaction to the medications or anesthesia, damage to the uterus or cervix, accidental uterine perforation or scarring, excessive bleeding, or infection.
After any abortion procedure, it is important that women call their abortion provider with any questions or concerns she may experience – or dial 911 in emergency situations.
As noted earlier, these are just the basics of the abortion process. It’s not unlikely this information has raised further questions for you as you contemplate your options. That’s why – if you are wondering about the abortion process in Oswego, Illinois or another community in or around DuPage County – we urge you to contact us for your private, free and confidential pregnancy consultation. Each of our locations (Elmhurst, Glen Ellyn / Lombard, Naperville, West Chicago, and Wood Dale, Illinois) provides a comfortable environment. Our caring staff is here to share with you the information you want as you make your pregnancy decisions. Many of our services are at no cost to you. Please contact us today by phone, text, email or chat. We’re waiting to hear from you.
- American Pregnancy Association. (2017, April). Abortion Procedures. Retrieved from: http://americanpregnancy.org/unplanned-pregnancy/abortion-procedures/
- American Pregnancy Association. (2017, April). Medical Abortion Procedures. Retrieved from: http://americanpregnancy.org/unplanned-pregnancy/medical-abortions/
- American Pregnancy Association. (2017, January). Surgical Abortion Procedures. Retrieved from: http://americanpregnancy.org/unplanned-pregnancy/surgical-abortions/
- Healthline. (2016, August). Surgical Abortion. Retrieved from: https://www.healthline.com/health/surgical-abortion
- WebMD. (2017, March). What Are the Types of Abortion Procedures? Retrieved from: https://www.webmd.com/women/abortion-procedures#1
- MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia. (2016, October). Abortion – Surgical. Retrieved from: https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002912.htm
Reviewed by Patricia Kuenzi, APN-CNP, MSN, ANP, PNP.
The information provided here is general in nature. It is not a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional. Before any medical procedure, it is imperative that you discuss your personal medical history, risks, and concerns with your doctor. If you have questions during or after a procedure, your doctor should be immediately contacted. Avenue Women’s Center is not an emergency center. If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as bleeding and/or pain, seek immediate medical attention. Contact your physician, go to an emergency room, or call 911.