What is induction abortion?

Induction Abortion
Jump to

Induction abortion: Overview

Induction abortion is ending a pregnancy by using medicines to start (induce) labor and delivery in the second or third trimester. This is done in the hospital. The doctor may also use a medicine to stop the pregnancy before induction.

The induction medicines may be put in the vagina, given by mouth, or given through a vein (I.V.). Different medicines may be combined to make sure that the induction works and to reduce bleeding. You will be offered medicines for pain.

How well does an induction abortion work?

Induction abortion is an effective way to end a pregnancy in the second or third trimester.

What are the risks of an induction abortion?

Induction abortion is safe and usually doesn't cause any problems. Possible problems include:

  • Failure to end the pregnancy.
  • Tissue remaining in the uterus.
  • Injury to the cervix.
  • Rupture of the uterus if a uterine scar is present from a previous surgery.
  • Heavy vaginal bleeding.
  • Infection.

What can you expect as you recover from an induction abortion?

As your body returns to its nonpregnant condition, there are some things you can expect during the days and weeks after the procedure.

  • You may have irregular bleeding or spotting for the first 2 weeks. Use sanitary pads until you stop bleeding. Using pads makes it easier to monitor your bleeding.
  • You may have cramps similar to menstrual cramps. They may last for several hours and maybe for a few days as the uterus shrinks back to its nonpregnant size.

Here are some things to do as you recover:

  • Rest as much as you can. You can return to your normal activities based on how you feel.
  • Ask your doctor if you can take acetaminophen (such as Tylenol) or ibuprofen (such as Advil). They may help relieve cramping pain. Do not take aspirin unless your doctor prescribed it. Be safe with medicines. Read and follow all instructions on the label.
  • Ask your doctor when it is okay for you to have vaginal sex. You can get pregnant in the weeks after an abortion. If you don't want to get pregnant, talk to your doctor about birth control options.

Why is an induction abortion done?

Induction is one option for abortion in the second or third trimester. It may be done because of a severe medical problem. It may also be done if you can't get an abortion earlier in pregnancy.

©2011-2024 Healthwise, Incorporated

The content above contains general health information provided by Healthwise, Incorporated, and reviewed by its medical experts. This content should not replace the advice of your healthcare provider. Not all treatments or services described are offered as services by us. For recommended treatments, please consult your healthcare provider.