What is abortion in pregnancy?

Abortion is the removal of pregnancy tissue, products of conception or the fetus and placenta (afterbirth) from the uterine cavity. In general, the terms fetus and placenta are used after eight weeks of intrauterine pregnancy. Pregnancy tissue and products of conception refer to tissue produced by the union of sperm with the ovum.

Other terms for an abortion include elective abortion, induced abortion, MTP, termination of pregnancy and therapeutic abortion.

Preparing for abortion

Your doctor will ask about your medical history and examine you internally as well. Even if you used a home pregnancy test, another pregnancy test often is needed to confirm that you are pregnant or not. In some cases, you will need an Ultrasound, may be transvaginal, to determine how many weeks into the pregnancy you are and the size of the fetus, and to make sure the pregnancy is not ectopic /tubal.

An ectopic pregnancy is one that is growing outside of the uterus, mostly in the tubes.

A blood test will determine your blood type and whether you are ABO Rh positive or negative. The Rh protein is made by the red blood cells of most women. These blood cells are considered Rh-positive. Some women have red blood cells that do not produce Rh protein; these blood cells are considered Rh-negative.

Pregnant women who have Rh-negative blood are at risk of reacting against fetal blood that is Rh-positive. Because a reaction can harm future pregnancies, Rh-negative women usually receive an injection of Rh immunoglobulin (RhIG) to prevent Rh-related problems after miscarriage or abortion.

How it is done

Doctors can use medicines, surgery or a combination of both to end a pregnancy. The method depends on how far along in the pregnancy you are, your medical history and your individual preference.

Abortions during early pregnancy, before 49 days, can be done safely with medications. Abortions between 6 and 14 weeks usually are done surgically, although medications may be used to help soften and open the cervix.

After 14 weeks, abortions can be done using labor-inducing medications that cause uterine contractions or by using these medicines in combination with surgery.

Medical abortion
Abortions completed with medication, called medical abortions, can be performed within 49  days of gestation. Days of gestation are the number of days beginning on the first day of your last menstrual period.

Most often doctors use a combination of mifepristone and misoprostol.

Surgical abortion

Suction or aspiration abortion

Sometimes called a suction D & E (for dilation and evacuation), this procedure can be done up to 14 weeks after the first day of the last menstrual period. Suction D & E is the procedure most commonly used to end a pregnancy. One dose of antibiotics is recommended prior to the procedure to prevent infection. The cervix is dilated (widened) and a rigid hollow tube is inserted into the uterus. An electric pump sucks out the contents of the uterus. The process takes about 15 minutes. Local anesthesia is usually applied to the cervix to minimize the pain of dilating the cervix. Medication given intravenously (into a vein) may help to decrease anxiety and relieve pain.

Why Dr. Ruchi Tandon is the best choice for your abortion?

Dr. Ruchi Tandon, is a gynecologist, based in South Delhi, practicing Obstetrics and Gynecology for over 14 years. She is proficient in all kinds of medical, surgical and high-risk abortions. She is available at her clinic in greater Kailash part 2, max smart super specialty hospital, Saket and Apollo Cradle Royale, Nehru Place, Delhi.

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