You think you are pregnant. You may have feelings of fear and confusion. You are about to make a life-changing decision. By law you are entitled to be fully informed of the risks and procedures of choices that are available to you. There are other options besides having an abortion, and there are people who care about you and the new baby inside of you that would like to help you through this important crisis in your life.
Normal States of Fetal Development (22)
7 Weeks from Conception
Embryo implants in uterus.
Human heartbeat starts.
Human anatomy develop.
Brain waves can be detected.
Brain begins to control muscles.
Every organ system is present. Feels pain and responds to touch.
Sucks thumb. Grasps an instrument placed in his/her palm.
Swims with a natural swimmer's stroke. (23)
Baby has sleep/wake cycle, digests food, has vocal chords and cries.
Should I worry about having an abortion?
It doesn't feel like I have another option.
When are abortions performed?
What are the risks of abortion?
What types of abortions are performed?
Manual Vacuum Aspiration
• Within 7 weeks after woman's Last Menstrual Period
The cervical muscle is stretched with dilators (metal rods) until the opening is wide enough to allow the abortion instruments to pass into the uterus. A tube (cannula) is then inserted into the uterus and the fetus is suctioned out. (17)
• Within 6-14 weeks after the woman's Last Menstrual Period
For this procedure, the cervix is opened with a dilator (a metal rod), then a tube is inserted into the uterus and is connected to a suction machine. The suction pulls the fetus' body apart and out of the uterus. (17)
Dilation and Evacuation
• Within 13-24 weeks after the woman's Last Menstrual Period
This surgical procedure is done after the twelfth week of pregnancy, when the fetus is too large to be broken up by suction. The cervix must be opened wider than on a first trimester abortion, and it is done by inserting laminaria (thin sticks derived from plants) a day or two before the abortion. The fetal parts are then pulled out with forceps. The fetus' skull is crushed to ease removal. (17)
Dilation and Extraction
• From 20 weeks after the womans's Last Menstrual Period to Full-Term
This procedure takes three days. During the first two days, the cervix is dilated. On the third day, the woman is given medication to induce labor. Using ultrasound, the doctor grasps the baby's leg and delivers the baby up until his/her head. Next, scissors are inserted into the base of the skull to create an opening. A suction catheter is placed into the opening to remove the skull contents. The skill collapses and the baby is removed. (17)
• Within 4-7 weeks after the woman's Last Menstrual Period
This medical abortion is used for women who are within 30-49 days of their last menstrual period. It generall requires three office visits. The combination of the RU 486 (mifepristone) pills and a second medication called misprostol are what causes the uterus to expel the fetus. (17)
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