The Decision to Have an Abortion

How to Care for Yourself Before and After an Early Surgical Abortion

An early surgical abortion takes place in the first trimester and is often done at a local doctor's office or clinic. With an early surgical abortion, you are going to meet with your doctor beforehand. It is important to know how your doctor will take care of you and how you need to take care of yourself after the surgery.

Before the Procedure

With an early surgical abortion, you will spend some time with your doctor before the procedure takes place. They are going to start by learning about your past health. It is important to share any medication you are taking with your doctor, as your medication could impact your surgery.

After getting your medical history, the doctor is going to do a physical exam. They will need to do a pelvic examination to evaluate your pregnancy and the state of the fetus. It is common for an ultrasound to be performed to verify how far along the pregnancy is, although this isn't a step all doctors take.

Once you have been examined, your doctor will talk to you about your feelings about the procedure and explain how it will work and what complications you need to look for. Commonly, your doctor will discuss any future pregnancy plans you have as well as birth control options.

Immediately After the Procedure

This is considered an outpatient procedure, which means you will not be staying the night after the procedure. However, the doctor will ask you to stay around for a little while for observation. They will ensure your heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing are normal before letting you leave. They will also make sure that you are not experiencing any side effects from the anesthetic and that you don't have excessive bleeding. This monitoring period is essential.

At Home After the Procedure

When you go home, your doctor is going to give you after-care options. You are going to want to take it easy for a day or two after the procedure. You will need to take some medication that will cause uterine contractions, which is necessary to help ensure your uterus is empty and slow down the bleeding. You have to take this medication.

You will want to take the full course of antibiotics that your doctor prescribes for you to ensure you don't develop an infection. You will also be given some mild pain medications, which can help with the inflammation and healing process and allow you to get through the uterine contractions without too much pain.

If you are thinking about getting an early surgical abortion, it is important to sit down and talk in detail with your doctor about the entire procedure and ensure you understand how to take care of yourself following the surgery.