Abortion at 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 & 9 Weeks

There are two methods of abortion that can be carried out in the first stages of pregnancy at 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 weeks of pregnancy.  The first is the Early Medical Abortion or Abortion Pill and the second is the Vacuum Aspiration method which can be used up to 15 weeks into your pregnancy.  All clinics vary on what treatments are available to be used for the number of weeks you are pregnant but you will be able to discuss what your options are when you attend the clinic.

The early medical abortion or abortion pill is available if you are under nine weeks pregnant.

You will take the treatment over the course of two days and two appointments. 

How is the treatment carried out?

At the first appointment you are given a tablet to take orally.  This drug is called mifepristone and it works to stop the hormones that make your body adjust to make the lining of the womb ready for the fertilised egg.  You are able to go home and do all your normal activities.

At the second appointment two days later you are given another tablet to be taken orally.  This drug is called prostaglandin.  Prostglandin works quickly, usually within a few hours, to help break down the lining of the womb removing the embryo along with it.  You may experience pain after taking the second tablet but normal painkiller can be taken to ease it.

Some clinics use different drugs for the second part but they are all effective in terminating the pregnancy.

This Abortion Pill method results in vaginal bleeding similar to a heavy period.  You may experience some period like pains but normal painkillers can be taken to help soothe the pain.

This abortion treatment can result in side effects such as nausea, sickness and diarrhoea.

Can everyone be offered the abortion pill?

The early abortion method is not suitable for everyone and there are certain factors that mean you are not eligible for treatment this way. 

These factors are:

  • If you are 35 year old or over and smoke 10 or more cigarettes each day
  • If it is thought that you have an ectopic pregnancy
  • If you have a past medical history of heart disease, high blood pressure, liver or kidney disease
  • If you are taking long term anti corticosteroids (taken for arthritis)
  • If you have an IUD (contraceptive device) which will not be removed
  • If you have adrenal failure
  • If you have any hemorrhagic disease or porphyria or are taking anti-coagulants
  • If you have inflammatory bowel disease which is poorly controlled

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