What are the failure rates and risks of an abortion?

Abortion is one of the most frequently performed gynaecological procedures in Nepaal. However, no clinical procedure is risk or side-effect free. While there's a low risk of problems (complications) happening during an abortion, they're important for you to know about.

Generally, abortions done in the first 12 weeks (first trimester) of pregnancy have the lowest risk. Abortions done after 12 weeks have a higher risk of complications. If you have an abortion in a safe, clinical setting like a Marie Stopes centres you're at a low risk of complications.

Marie Stopes centres carry out two types of abortion: medical (the abortion pill) and surgical.

Risks and failure rates of medical abortion

Most women experience no complications when having a medical abortion. However, you will experience bleeding and strong cramps (like period pains) that can last for several weeks. While uncomfortable, this is completely normal and easily managed with painkillers and sanitary pads.

Side effects you might experience: diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, warm flushes, chills, headaches and pains. Medical abortion can also worsen symptoms of migraines and asthma in some people.

There can be other complications - but these are very rare.

At Marie Stopes Centres, we'll always ask for a medical history when you're planning a medical abortion to ensure your safety. Some clients may be more suitable for a surgical abortion due to pre-existing medical conditions.

Risks and failure rates of surgical abortion

Surgical abortion is a procedure that uses gentle suction to remove the pregnancy tissue from the womb. This procedure is safer when it's done before 12 weeks gestation, and is associated with more complications later on in a pregnancy. We can do terminations up to 24 weeks at Marie Stopes UK. Surgical abortion can be done under a local anaesthetic, or conscious sedation, and is done under a general anaesthetic at higher gestations.

Most women experience no complications when having a surgical abortion. However, you might experience minor abdominal pain and some mild vaginal discharge or bleeding after the procedure. This generally settles after a few days.

The rate of major complications from surgically abortion has declined dramatically and in 2014 is now about 1 in 1000 abortions.

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