Abortion is a medical procedure that is used to end a pregnancy. There are two types of abortion:
- Medical abortion– Medical abortion is a method of ending a pregnancy that involves taking medication. It is used in the early stages of pregnancy for women who are up to 10 weeks pregnant. The most common medications used for medical abortion are mifepristone and misoprostol.
- Surgical abortion– Surgical abortion is a medical procedure that is used to end a pregnancy. There are several different types of surgical abortion procedures, including aspiration or suction abortion, dilation and curettage (D&C), and induction abortion. The type of procedure used will depend on how far along the pregnancy the woman is and other factors.
After an abortion, it is possible to conceive again as soon as you have your next menstrual period. However, the timing of your next menstrual period may vary, and it is not uncommon for periods to be irregular or missed after an abortion. Usually, 4 to 8 weeks following your abortion, you’ll get your first period again. Your initial cycles are probably heavier and last longer than usual. Furthermore, it’s typical to pass more clots than usual. Your lack of menstruation could be justified if you began hormonal contraception around the time of your abortion. Your menstruation may stop or vary if you use some hormonal contraceptives.
Additionally, if a person experiences exceptionally heavy bleeding or pain that cannot be relieved by over-the-counter painkillers after having an abortion, they should see a doctor. The size of a lemon-sized blood clot is typical during post-abortion bleeding. If any blood clots are larger than this, a doctor should be consulted. During or after an abortion, frequent symptoms include nausea, sweating, and dizziness. However, people with fever or severe dizziness should visit a doctor. If a person notices any concerning symptoms, they should speak with a doctor for advice and assurance.
If you are planning to become pregnant after an abortion, it is important to discuss this with your healthcare provider. They can help you understand any potential risks and provide you with guidance on how to optimise your chances of conceiving.
Does abortion affect fertility of a woman?
In most cases, having an abortion does not affect a woman’s ability to become pregnant and have a successful pregnancy in the future. The majority of women who have had an abortion are able to conceive and carry a pregnancy without any difficulty. However, there are some factors that can affect a woman’s fertility after an abortion. For example, if the abortion was incomplete or if there were complications during the procedure, it is possible that the uterus or other reproductive organs were damaged. This can affect a woman’s ability to conceive and carry a pregnancy to term. Additionally, certain medical conditions or underlying health issues can affect a woman’s fertility, and these conditions may be more common in women who have had an abortion. For example, women who have had multiple abortions, or who have had an abortion at a later stage of pregnancy, may be more likely to experience complications such as infection or scarring, which can affect fertility.
Can you get pregnant after abortion?
Yes, it is possible to become pregnant after having an abortion. In most cases, having an abortion does not affect a woman’s ability to conceive and carry a pregnancy to term in the future. Within two weeks of having an abortion, a woman can become pregnant. There is generally no medical reason to put off attempting to conceive again for individuals who are ready, unless a doctor suggests otherwise. After an abortion, a woman doesn’t need to take any special precautions in order to get pregnant. Some medical professionals advise delaying until after the first menstrual cycle, though. This will make estimating the due date of the next pregnancy easier.
When is it safe to get pregnant after an abortion?
Every woman is different, and the amount of time it takes for the body to heal after an abortion can vary. It is typically recommended to wait at least one to three weeks after an abortion before trying to become pregnant again. This allows the body time to heal and recover from the abortion, and can help reduce the risk of complications during the next pregnancy.
If you are considering trying to become pregnant again after an abortion, it is important to discuss your plans with a healthcare provider. They can provide guidance on when it is safe to try to become pregnant again, and can help you understand the potential risks and how to reduce them. They can also provide support and guidance throughout your pregnancy to help ensure a healthy and successful outcome.
Are pregnancy tests accurate after an abortion?
Most pregnancy tests work by detecting the presence of the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in the urine or blood. This hormone is produced by the placenta during pregnancy, and its levels typically increase over the first few weeks of pregnancy.
After an abortion, the levels of hCG in the body will decrease, but it can take some time for the levels to return to normal. If a pregnancy test is taken too soon after an abortion, it may still detect the presence of hCG and give a false positive result. It is typically recommended to wait at least one to three weeks after an abortion before taking a pregnancy test. This allows the levels of hCG to decrease to a level that is no longer detectable by the test and can help ensure that the test is accurate.
If you are unsure when to take a pregnancy test after an abortion, or if you have any concerns about the accuracy of the test, it is important to discuss your concerns with a healthcare provider. They can guide when to take the test and can help you understand the potential risks and how to reduce them.
After an abortion, it is possible to become pregnant again as soon as you ovulate, which can occur as early as two weeks after the abortion. It is important to use contraception to prevent unwanted pregnancies. It is also necessary to follow up with your healthcare provider to ensure that the abortion was successful and that your health is good. Additionally, you should wait until you are emotionally and physically ready to engage in sexual activity.
- Haddad LB, Nour NM. Unsafe abortion: unnecessary maternal mortality. Rev Obstet Gynecol. 2009 Spring;2(2):122-6. PMID: 19609407; PMCID: PMC2709326. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2709326/
- Steier JA, Bergsjø P, Myking OL. Human chorionic gonadotropin in maternal plasma after induced abortion, spontaneous abortion, and removed ectopic pregnancy. Obstet Gynecol. 1984 Sep;64(3):391-4. PMID: 6462569. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/6462569/
- Virk J, et al. (2007). Medical abortion and the risk of subsequent adverse pregnancy outcomes. DOI:10.1056/NEJMoa070445