Abortion FAQs

The Ten Most Frequently Asked Questions on Abortion

  • Abortions can be performed in several ways: first-trimester surgical abortions (suction aspiration, D&C), first-trimester medicinal abortions (abortion pill), and second and third-trimester surgical abortions (D&E, D&X, induction)
  • The cost of a first-trimester abortion differs from country to country: USA $350-1,000, GB covered by NHS, Australia $220-500, Canada $450-900, Ireland £450, New Zealand NZ $450, Netherlands €450-1300, South Africa R 800 – 1100.

  • A woman’s abortion experience is unique and cannot be generalized. Physical complications and emotional trauma are possible but not inevitable.

⚖️ Wondering whether to get an abortion or not? – Take the Abortion Test!

1. Until When Can I Get an Abortion?

Abortion laws vary from region to region. While some countries allow abortion for all nine months of pregnancy, many governments impose restrictions, and others ban it altogether. These cut-off dates go by markers, such as the detection of a fetal heartbeat at six weeks, completion of the first trimester, or viability outside the womb.

However, a medical abortion using the abortion pill is restricted to the first nine weeks of pregnancy — after that, only surgical methods can be used.

2. How Does an Abortion Work?

There are five primary methods of abortion:

  • Medication Abortion: an abortion using pills. The pregnant woman takes the abortion medication; the embryo loses its source of nourishment and is later expelled.
  • Suction / Vacuum Aspiration: First-trimester surgical procedure performed under local or general anesthesia. Using the suction aspiration method, the embryo is sucked out of the uterus using a vacuum device.
  • Dilation & Curettage (D&C): First-trimester surgical procedure performed under local or general anesthesia. During a D&C, the embryo is surgically scraped from the uterus.
  • Dilation and Evacuation (D&E): Second-trimester surgical procedure performed under sedation. During a D&E, the fetus is dismembered within the uterus and removed via forceps.
  • Dilation and Extraction (D&X): Second and third-trimester surgical procedure performed under sedation. During a D&X, the fetus is removed intact while collapsing the head to reduce its circumference.
  • Induction Abortion: Second and third-trimester procedure. Birth is induced. If the fetus is beyond the age of viability, it is given a lethal injection prior to delivery.

For information on the ten main steps of an abortion procedure and how the methods compare, go to Abortion Methods.

🏥 or take the Test: Abortion Methods: What Do I Need to Know? and receive an immediate evaluation.

To learn more about the diverse types of anesthesia, go to Abortion - Which Anesthesia?

3. How Much Does an Abortion Cost?

The amount you would be expected to pay for an abortion depends on gestational age, abortion method, type of anesthesia, doctor’s fees, and region.

  • A medicinal abortion costs approx.:
    • USA US $350-650
    • GB covered by NHS
    • Australia AUS $220 – 440
    • Canada CAN $450
    • Ireland £450-540
    • New Zealand NZ $840
    • South Africa R 945
  • A first-trimester surgical abortion costs approx.:
    • USA US $600-1,000
    • GB covered by NHS
    • Australia AUS $330-500
    • Canada < CAN $ 900
    • Ireland £450-540
    • New Zealand > NZ $1200
    • Netherlands < €1300
    • South Africa R 1100

Abortions for minors cost the same amount, but other abortion regulations may apply. In most cases, women pay the above amounts out of pocket. Some insurances or governments cover the cost of an abortion.

Is the Price All That Matters?

When counting the cost of an abortion, remember to take the immaterial aspects into consideration. To what extent will you have to sacrifice your health or emotional well-being? Don’t rush your decision to avoid extra costs! Taking sufficient time and counsel will allow you to make a well-rounded decision.

4. Should I Get an Abortion? Pros and Cons

Many pregnant women feel unsure of what to do when considering abortion. They are conflicted about their pregnancy. This means they feel torn between the arguments for and against abortion.

How to find a viable solution in this situation:

  • 🕰 Above all, take sufficient time to make this decision.
  • 12 Guidelines For Making Good Decisions
  • 📋 Try writing a list of pros and cons and weighing the arguments.
  • ❤️ Many pregnant women also agree that it was vital for them to come to a decision where their heart and mind were aligned.
  • ⚖️ Use the Abortion Test to aid you in your decision-making process!

5. What Are the Risks Associated with Abortion?

Terminating a pregnancy may lead to physical, mental, or emotional complications.

Abortions using suction aspiration or D&C are surgical procedures. The accompanying risks are comparatively low but cannot be ruled out:

  • The mucosa, cervix and uterus can be injured by surgical instruments. This could increase the risk of miscarriage in subsequent pregnancies.
  • There may be a risk of cardiovascular complications due to the anesthesia.

Medicinal abortion can cause further bleeding and abdominal pain, even after the embryo has been expelled.

Apart from the physical effect, some women are also at risk of emotional repercussions. While some women initially experience a sense of relief after an abortion, others are confronted with feelings of grief or pain — immediately or at a later point in time.

6. What Are Late-Term Abortion Laws and Procedures?

In most countries, abortions are considered late-term after the first trimester (between the 13th and the 40th week of pregnancy). Often, late-term abortions are restricted to medical emergencies, for example, if a doctor deems that a continuation of pregnancy poses a threat to the mother’s life or causes severe adverse effects.

Some countries allow late-term abortions indiscriminately or in the case of fetal abnormality, rape, or incest.

  • Considering a late-term abortion? Find out more about your regional exemptions, HERE

Up to 98% of abortions between weeks 10 and 20 are performed by D&E. (UpToDate.com) Here, the fetus is dismembered within the womb and extracted in pieces. This method is often preferred, as it does not require an overnight stay.

Induction is another late-term abortion method. If the fetus is not yet viable outside the uterus, labor is induced. The birth process then causes the fetus to die. If the fetus has reached viability outside the uterus, it receives an injection of potassium chloride in the womb, which leads to cardiac arrest. After that, delivery is induced.

7. What Are the Most Common Reasons or an Abortion?

No two women are alike, which is also true of the unique situation they find themselves in. Therefore, everyone has different reasons for considering an abortion.

Nevertheless, most women’s stories share some of these four common threads which cause them consider abortion:

  1. "He doesn't want the baby" — Many pregnant women indicate that they are considering an abortion because their boyfriend or husband is opposed to the baby. Go to: He Does Not Want the Baby. for information and advice.
  2. "Complicated relationship with the father" — The relationship is still very new, unhappy, just casual, or the child is the result of an affair. Is your relationship status complicated? This article will provide direction.
  3. "I need to be there for my other children" — Many pregnant women also consider having an abortion because they are already mothers — and want to be able to take care of their other children. We address this in the article: Pregnant Again - And Overwhelmed.
  4. "I already have other plans for my life" — Some pregnant women also consider having an abortion because they desire to live their lives according to a set plan, and this pregnancy threw them for a loop. Sound familiar? Go to: Pregnant – Bad Timing!

Read more about the four most common reasons women consider having an abortion!

Discover your personality traits and inner strengths:

8. What Experiences Have Other Women Had with Abortion?

Some women, facing the decision of whether to have an abortion, wonder what other women have gone through. Reading about the lived experiences of others can be helpful in one’s own decision-making process. Still, since each person is unique, their experience cannot be replicated. Read stories of women who have shared their abortion experience, HERE

9. How Common Are Abortions in My Area and Worldwide?

According to W.H.O., 29% of all pregnancies are aborted each year, totaling 73 million abortions worldwide annually.

Additional information:

The number of abortions in each country is measured per 1000 women of childbearing age:

  • US: 20.8
  • UK: 17
  • Australia and New Zealand: 19.7
  • Canada: 15.2
  • Ireland: 1
  • South Africa: 4.5

⛑ Pregnant and unsure where to go from here? Take the First Aid Test

10. Anxious and Unsure Where to Go from Here?

This may be much more than a quest for facts. Perhaps this is a very personal topic for you. You may have just found out you are pregnant and are trying to decide what to do next. Many thoughts and emotions are coming at you all at once. You probably feel the pressure to come up with a quick solution but are unsure how to proceed.

You are not alone! Allow us to walk alongside you as you walk through this valley. We would love for you to take advantage of our judgment-free resources. Use them to discern the path that is perfect for you:

Did you find the information in this article helpful?