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You will have a chance to learn more about abortion during your initial consultation, but here are some of the key abortion facts that might help if you are considering a termination.
A large number of women will choose to have an abortion at some point in their lives. Women of all ages and backgrounds have abortions, for all kinds of reasons. These include medical complications, financial worries, not being ready for a child, or having a complete family already.
Pregnancy termination is available in the UK up to 24 weeks, but most women will have an abortion much earlier than this. In some cases, a termination can be provided after 24 weeks, but this is only if there is a serious medical concern. Terminations must be carried out at a hospital, even if you are having a medical abortion. They also require the consent of two doctors, one of whom can be your GP.
A medical abortion simply involves taking two different kinds of medication. Surgical abortions and manual vacuum aspiration are slightly different procedures that both use suction to remove the contents of the womb through your cervix. You will get the full abortion facts on the procedure from your doctor during the initial consultation.
A medical abortion can be performed up to 9 weeks. Manual vacuum aspiration is available up to 12 weeks. Surgical abortion is usually carried out between 9 and 18 weeks.
One of the most important abortion facts to remember is that the procedures performed in the UK are very safe. There is a small risk of treatable complications such as heavy bleeding or infection, and an even smaller risk of more serious problems. Your doctor will help you to understand the risks so you can make an informed decision.
You can choose to have an abortion through the NHS or at a private clinic. You can see your GP for a referral first, or make an appointment at a private clinic directly.
“ When I found that I was unexpectedly pregnant, I wanted a someone to talk to who would be sympathetic and unbaised and who would go through all my options in detail. This is exactly what I found with the team at 132 Healthwise. Although it was a very difficult time, the sensivitiy and understanding of the team was remarkable. I would recommend them to anyone who finds themselves in my situation. ”
Miss CM, London
"I panicked when I discovered that I was five weeks pregnant. It was a total shock and I wanted to deal wih the problem urgently. I knew that I didn't want to keep the pregnancy, for a vareity of reasons, but I didn't know how to deal with it. Rather than waiting for an NHS appointment, a friend recommended I rang 132 Healthwise. From the first phone call I was put at ease. I was given an appointment the next day, when I had a scan and saw the consultant. I had many questions, all of which were dealt with in detail and with sympathy. I made the decision to go ahead with a medical abortion, which was very straightforward. I had the consultants personal phone number, so I could ring him at any time, if I had worries or further questions. Nobody wants to be in this situation, but the staff at 132 Healthwise made it as trouble free as possible."
Miss AF, London
Abortion carried out by medicine rather than surgery.
The procedure is done with general anesthesia and oral pain-relieving medications.
Diagnosis and treatment of early pregnancy problems including abortion, sexually transmitted infections (STIs).