Front facing view of uterus

Types of Abortion

Depending on your unique circumstances, including how long you have been pregnant, you will have one of two safe, effective abortions — either a medication abortion or an in-clinic abortion. 

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What is a medication abortion?

Medication abortions are provided up to 11 weeks of pregnancy. After an ultrasound in our office, a clinician will determine your eligibility for this option. If you are eligible, you will take one medication by mouth in the health center on the day of your appointment.This medication will block a hormone called progesterone that is needed for a pregnancy to continue. Some patients experience nausea or start bleeding after this first medication. Your appointment will last about  2–3 hours total. Within 48 hours of your visit, you will take a second medication causing the cervix to soften and the uterus to contract and empty. Next steps will be discussed at your appointment. Please note: even if you are eligible for a medication abortion, you can always choose to have an in-clinic abortion.

First, you’ll meet with a Planned Parenthood health care provider to discuss your options. You’ll receive an exam, lab tests, and potentially an ultrasound to determine how far along you are in your pregnancy. Your health care provider will give you specific instructions to prepare for your medication abortion, including written directives and a 24/7 phone number to call if you have any questions.

During your medication abortion, you’ll take two different medications (as instructed by your health care provider). After taking the second medication, you will experience cramping and bleeding. Plan to take the day to rest. You can have your abortion at home or wherever you’re most comfortable. If you’re at home, you may want someone you trust to stay with you for support. Your Abortion Navigator will give you detailed instructions for what to expect during your medication abortion.

After taking the second medicine, you’ll experience bleeding and cramping, so plan ahead to make sure you’ll be as comfortable as possible. You can take the second medication at home, or wherever you’re most comfortable. You may want to have a trusted person with you for support, just in case you need anything.

We recommend having a heating pad for your cramps and taking some pain medication (not aspirin, because it can make you bleed more). 

Our health care staff will provide you with written after-care instructions and a phone number to call if you have any questions or concerns. You may need to return for a check up or lab work after your procedure, our staff will let you know. 

Resting after your abortion is important. You can return to work, school, and other activities the next way, just avoid hard work or heavy exercise for a few days. You can use menstrual products for any bleeding. You can have sex as as soon as you feel ready. 

Cramping can last for a few days, and bleeding can last for several weeks after the abortion pill. 

Plan on resting after your abortion. We recommend avoiding hard work or heavy exercise for a few days, but you can usually go back to work, school, and most activities the following day.  You can use pads, tampons, or a menstrual cup for any bleeding —  whatever’s the most comfortable for you. But your nurse or provider may recommend you use pads so you can track how much you’re bleeding. You can have sex as soon as you feel ready.

You can also learn more about it here.

front view of a pill bottle with two pills next to it

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What is an in-clinic abortion?

Currently at PPCWNY, ICA are provided up to 13 weeks and six days of pregnancy.  After an ultrasound in our office, a clinician will remove the pregnancy tissue from the uterus using gentle suction. You may request sedation for the procedure. The sedation will not put you to sleep but will help you relax. After the procedure, you will be monitored in the recovery area until you are given the okay from our health care staff to return home. For an in-clinic abortion, your appointment can last about 4–6 hours. 

Once you schedule your appointment, a local Planned Parenthood Abortion Navigator will contact you to answer any questions you may have.

First, you’ll meet with a Planned Parenthood health care provider to discuss your options. They will perform a few lab tests and exams, and maybe an ultrasound to see how far into your pregnancy you are.

Your health care provider will instruct you on care for after your abortion, along with any medication you may need. You will also receive a number to call 24/7 for any questions or concerns.

Treatment can vary slightly from patient to patient, depending on how far you are in your pregnancy. For details on what to expect during an in-clinic abortion, click here.

Ensure you can take the day to rest after your abortion. Have maxi pads ready and a heating pad for cramps in case you need it. Make sure you have some pain medication like ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) — but don’t take aspirin because it can make you bleed more.

If you take any medicines, please continue to take them normally before your appointment or bring them with you on the day of your appointment.

If you have asthma, bring an inhaler if you have one.

If you desire medication to help make your in-clinic abortion more comfortable, you must have a responsible companion with you to help you get home safely.

Our health care staff will provide you with written after-care instructions and a phone number to call if you have any questions or concerns. You may need a ride home if you received sedation during your appointment. You may need to return for a check up or lab work after your procedure, our staff will let you know. 

Resting after your abortion is important. You can return to work, school, and other activities the next way, just avoid hard work or heavy exercise for a few days. You can use menstrual products for any bleeding. You can have sex as as soon as you feel ready. 

Additional resources & support for your abortion appointment

When you choose an abortion service at our health center, you may also receive the following: a pregnancy test; a chance to speak with a trained staff person about all of your choices: abortion, adoption, and parenting; a conversation with the health care provider about your health history; lab tests/blood work; a pelvic exam; an ultrasound; medicines to make the abortion more comfortable; medicines if you are Rh negative; birth control information; a birth control method (if you want one); and post-abortion follow-up exams.