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Common Abortion Questions
1What is abortion? When can it be done?

Note: Always use CONDOM or PLAN for pregnancy rather than going for an abortion.

1. Abortion is termination of pregnancy either by choice or accidentally (miscarriage).
2. Types of Abortion:
    a. Induced Abortion (Intentional killing undeveloped embryo/ foetus) can be done in 2 ways:
      - Non-Surgical Medical Abortion is termination of pregnancy through combination of PILLS.
      - Surgical Abortion is termination of pregnancy surgically by removing embryo/ foetus from uterus.
    b. Spontaneous Abortion (Unintentional Miscarriage) due to accidental suffering/natural causes.
3. It is safe to go for an abortion in first 2.5 months of pregnancy.
4. Though abortion can be done up to 28 weeks, after 4 months is considered illegal.
5. Post this period it is usually performed in exceptional cases only when there is threat to mother's life.
6. Only qualified doctors can perform abortion in an approved hospital/ clinic.
7. Too many abortions should be avoided, as it may lead to infection & termination of pregnancy in future.
8. In case first pregnancy resulted in miscarriage, you can still give birth to a healthy child.

2How to avoid abortion?

1. Tips to avoid Spontaneous Abortion (Miscarriage):
    a. Eat healthy, drink plenty of water and avoid junk food.
    b. Get adequate rest (sleep for 8 hours each night) and avoid stress.
    c. Stay away from alcohol & cigarette/ smoke as it has an adverse effect on unborn child.
    d. Stay away from pesticides & paints as they contain chemicals which can have harmful effect on foetus.
    e. Avoid harmful radiations from microwaves which may lead to termination of pregnancy.
    f. Avoid jerks. Do not lift heavy items.
2. Tips to avoid Induced Abortion:
    a. Go for contraceptive methods (pills, male condom) to avoid unplanned pregnancy & hence abortion.
    b. For more details, Click Here.
    c. Seek proper advice while planning a baby.
    d. Effective sex education programs for youngsters.

3What are the reasons for irregular menstrual cycle after abortion?

1. Alteration in hormonal patterns or changes in hormonal secretion.
2. Left out tissues in the uterus.
3. Infection after abortion may lead to irregular/ prolonged menstrual cycle.
4. What to do in this case:
    - Consult your doctor immediately.
    - You may have to undergo ultrasound scans/ required tests.
    - Infection can be treated with antibiotics.
    - Dilation & Curettage (D&C) might be required for left-out tissue in the uterus.

4Will anyone be able to find out that I had an abortion?

1. Until you have a medical check-up with gynecologist, no one can make out about your abortion.
2. According to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act Law, an abortion/health care provider
    cannot disclose your health information to anybody without your permission.

5What are the risks involved in abortion?

1. Incomplete Abortion (parts of foetus still inside uterus) may lead to cramping & severe infections.
2. Surgical abortion leads to perforation (injury to uterus/cervix by surgical instrument used).
3. Perforation may lead to weakness or scar tissue formation.
4. Chances of Pelvic inflammatory disease, cervical, ovarian, breast or reproductive system cancer.
5. Haemorrhaging (excessive discharge of blood/ abnormal bleeding), infection & uterine rupture.
6. Risk of conceiving inability rises (in case of complications like uterus perforation).
7. May lead to unexpected guilt, emotional distress & sexual dysfunction.

6What precautions should I take after an abortion?

1. Avoid bending, lifting weight, strenuous exercise & stretching of muscles for at least 10-15 days.
2. Avoid eating & drinking dairy products (as it dilutes the effect of Doxycycline given during abortion).
3. Avoid sitting in a bath tub, swimming & intercourse until bleeding stops.
4. Have antibiotics (seek doctor's recommendation) to prevent infection.

7What are some reasons for Spontaneous Abortion (Miscarriage)?

1. Chromosomal Abnormality i.e. unsystematic errors in the development of embryo.
2. Diseases or complications during pregnancy such as:
    a. Diabetes (may lead to major birth defects).
    b. Hormonal Factors like Cushing's syndrome, thyroid etc.
    c. High Blood Pressure.
    d. Collagen Vascular Diseases (person's immune system attacks their own organs).
3. Exposure to radiation, environmental pollutants or toxins.
4. Physical trauma, smoking or alcohol abuse.

8Can I go to work the day after having an abortion?

1. End of pregnancy generally leads to physical toll on most of the women.
2. It is advisable to take off for few days if your job is physically demanding.
3. Women experience heavy pain & bleeding in case of non-surgical abortion.
4. Rest for at least 7 to 10 days is recommended.
5. Consult your doctor in case you are not feeling well.

9Which is better, Surgical Abortion or Non-Surgical Abortion?

1. Both surgical & non-surgical methods of abortion are safe and effective with high success rate.
2. Considering one's preferences, lifestyle & comfort level, this choice is elective.
3. Non-surgical abortion leads to heavy & painful bleeding which may last from 10-14 days.
4. Pain & bleeding is comparatively less in surgical abortion which is up to 5 days.
5. Patient is discharged within 3-4 hrs in case of surgical abortion.
6. Non surgical abortion requires at least 2 sittings (pill dosages).
7. Do not take any medication/ pill without consulting your gynae for non-surgical abortion.

10Do I need my parents consent, if I am below 18 yrs?

Yes, as per Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act, 1971 permission in writing is required from parent/ guardian, in case you are below 18 yrs.

11Will insurance pay for an abortion?

1. No. Insurance schemes for abortion are almost non- existent in India.