You probably have many questions regarding a second trimester abortion procedure. This information is designed to address those concerns. Please read the information carefully.
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A second trimester abortion (20-24 weeks) requires 2 visits to our office, over 2 consecutive days. The abortion method we use, called Dilatation and Evacuation (D&E), is the medically indicated procedure for second trimester abortion.
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- Be in our office for approximately 2-3 hours.
- Complete self-medical history and consent forms.
- Leave a urine sample for a pregnancy test.
- Have a simple blood test by finger stick to determine your blood count and your Rh factor.
- Have a sonogram to estimate the length of pregnancy.
- Meet with an intake counselor to discuss your medical history forms and to make your payment in full.
- Meet with a patient educator who will discuss the abortion procedures, aftercare instructions and birth control options.
- Have an examination and the laminaria insertion.
- Be in our office for approximately 4-6 hours.
- Receive Cytotec medication (up to 4 hour wait for medication to take effect)
- Complete the abortion procedure under general anesthesia. Recuperate with the nurse in the recovery room (Approx. 1 hour).
- You must have an escort to take you home after receiving general anesthesia.
Prior to your procedure you will be given written after-care instructions. Post-operative care is essential to your wellbeing.
To protect against infection, antibiotics are given routinely. If your blood type is RH negative you will be given Rhogam injection. If the physician deems it necessary, you may also be given Methergine to help your uterus to contract.
We are On Call 24 hours a day for medical emergencies.
All patients must have a post-operative exam two weeks after the procedure. We encourage patients to return to their referring physicians. However, complete post-operative care and on-going gynecological services are available to all self-referred patients.
Second trimester abortion is a safe surgical procedure and has approximately the same rate of complications as normal childbirth. Complications range from minor to severe, including the rare event of death. However, deaths that occur during abortions in the second trimester are usually the result of physical complications present prior to the procedure. Therefore, it is very important that you inform us fully about your medical history and any drugs, legal or illegal, that you are using.
Complications that can occur during or after the abortion include infection, incomplete abortion (where some of the placenta remains in the uterus), injuries to the uterus, cervical tear, heavy and prolonged bleeding, whole body complications such as blood clotting problems, adverse reactions to the drugs, shock, cardiac arrest, amniotic fluid embolism and possible sterility. If you have a multiple pregnancy, the chances of complications increase. There is also the possibility of cervical incompetence that may result in problems maintaining a pregnancy in the future (possible miscarriage, stillbirth, low birth weight, premature delivery). Should any of these complications arise, antibiotic drugs and blood transfusions may be required. Remember, although many types of complications have been listed, the chances of a complication are small.
Many complications are also a result of NOT taking care of yourself after you leave our office. It is essential that you follow the post-operative instructions explained to you. Even though complications are rare, you should call us immediately if there is a problem such as those mentioned on your post-operative instruction sheet.
Our doctors are on call 24 hours a day.
A complication that is detected early is usually easily treated and corrected before it can become a major complication.
We require your entire procedure fee to be paid before the abortion procedure is begun. Payment can be made in cash, money order, or credit card (MasterCard, VISA, American Express, or Discover). New York State Medicaid and most insurance plans are accepted, but must be verified prior to your visit.
You may also have additional fees if the doctor or medical staff determines that you need extra medications or testing. This may include, but is not limited to: injectable antibiotics, early detection urine pregnancy test, urine culture, throat culture, or Rhogam injection. If you have Rh negative blood it is absolutely essential that you receive a Rhogam injection. There are some supplies which you have the option to purchase while in our office. Methergine tablets or the Depo Provera injection (birth control) are both available for an additional charge. Ask the intake counselor if you have questions about the cost of these medications.
If the abortion procedure is not performed due to patient request or physician advice, you will be responsible for payment for services already rendered such as the pregnancy test, sonogram and lab tests. All other fees will be refunded.