Before deciding to have an abortion, there are a number of possible risks that you should be aware of before you visit the clinic. The factors associated with these risks are different for every woman depending on their individual health status, age and the duration of your pregnancy.
At Gateway, we believe that every woman should be aware of the possible risks associated with this procedure and should have a better understanding of abortion procedures.
Minor (common) after-effects of abortion:
Certain side effects that are more commonly observed after an abortion are:
- Uterine cramps and pain in the abdomen and the pelvis
- Bloating, discomfort and occasional nausea and vomiting. These symptoms are more frequent with some women than others
- Upset stomach and diarrhea in some cases
- Various levels of post-procedure bleeding may occur. In some instances, this may be light (spotting) or moderate to heavy bleeding. These symptoms may persist for one week or up to three weeks maximum.
- Infections (uterine or cervical)
- Minor complications related to anesthesia
Serious (rare) after-effects of abortion:
These are the major risks of abortion that should be understood prior to abortion and be discussed with the doctor prior to your appointment.
- Uterine Perforation – damage to the uterine walls may cause complications in future pregnancies.
- Placenta Previa – this is the result of a damaged uterus where the development of the placenta is abnormal causing a threat to both the mother and the fetus for any future pregnancy.
- Preterm births or handicapped childbirth –the abortion procedure may damage the cervix and/or uterus. Abortion procedures may result in future pregnancies may not complete to full term. Children from future pregnancies may suffer birth defects or complications in delivery.
- Cervical or Ovarian Cancer – women with the history of even a single abortion have higher cancer risks than women that do not experience an abortion.
Psychological Effects of an Abortion
The risks of abortion procedures are not confined to the physical aspects but also may include a psychological effect, such as:
- Eating disorders
- Flashbacks of abortion
- Relationship problems
Please consider all of the related complications and implications of your abortion prior to your decision. We encourage you to meet with your partner and discuss with your options with your family or close friends prior to making your decision. As with many important decisions we face, having all of the information and weighing all of your options is vital to making the best decision.
If you have any questions or wish to discuss these risks with an experienced professional, please contact the Gateway staff for an confidential consultation.