Looking for information about taking the abortion pill or different types of abortion procedures? The staff at Real Options are here to answer any questions you have. We understand that an unplanned pregnancy is scary and that the thought of abortion can be scary, too, which is why we offer pregnancy options coaching. This free session at our center will be a safe place for you to discuss your concerns, learn about your options and get your questions answered about each one.

What do I need to know about abortion?

Abortion providers offer both medical and surgical abortions. The types of abortion available to you depend on factors such as how far along you are and what procedures an abortion provider offers. Because abortion is a medical procedure, it’s important to consider all the facts and do your research before making a decision.

Medical Abortions

Medical abortions use drugs, instead of surgical instruments, to end a pregnancy. “The Abortion Pill” (mifepristone plus misoprostol) is the most common form of medical abortion and ends a pregnancy up to 10 weeks along. To end a pregnancy, a woman takes a series of pills that disrupt the embryo’s attachment to the uterus and cause uterine cramps to push the embryo out of the body.

possible side effects:

  • Heavy and prolonged bleeding
  • Severe cramping
  • Gastrointestinal distress
  • Fever
  • Infection
  • An incomplete abortion, which will require a surgical abortion

Surgical Abortions

Surgical abortions are done by opening the cervix and passing instruments into the uterus to suction or scrape the pregnancy out of the body. Below, you can find some of the different types of surgical procedures used. However, the exact procedure is determined by the size of the fetus.


Aspiration/suction abortions are offered up to 13 weeks of pregnancy. The abortion involves opening the cervix, passing a tube inside the uterus, and attaching it to a suction device which pulls the embryo out. Local anesthesia is typically offered to reduce pain.

Dilation and Evacuation

This procedure is typically used in the second trimester. Besides the need to open the cervix much wider, the main difference between this procedure and a first-trimester abortion is the use of forceps to remove the fetus in smaller pieces. Moreover, D&E is associated with a much higher risk of complications compared to a first-trimester surgical abortion. Local anesthesia, oral or intravenous pain medications and sedation are commonly used.

D&E After Viability

This procedure is offered from 24 weeks pregnant and up and typically takes two to three days to complete. Before starting the procedure, drugs may be injected into the fetus or the amniotic fluid to cause fetal death. Then, the cervix is opened, the amniotic sac is broken and forceps are used to remove the fetus. General anesthesia is usually recommended, if available.

possible Side Effects:

  • Prolonged bleeding
  • Cramping
  • Damage to the uterine lining or cervix (rare)
  • Infection
  • Blood clots
  • Nausea
  • Feeling faint/weak

Abortion, like all your options, is a serious decision. Don’t make it alone! Contact us to learn more about these procedures and your pregnancy options.


NOTE: We offer accurate information about all your pregnancy options; however, we do not offer or refer for abortion services. The information presented on this website is intended for general education purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional and/or medical advice.

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