Safe procedure: Everything you need to know about the abortion
If you have questions or uncertainties about abortion, Marie Stopes is here to put your mind at ease. Below, we tell you everything you need to know about our safe abortion procedure, and if you decide to terminate, we offer our abortion services in a safe and non-judgemental environment.
What is a medical abortion?
A medical abortion uses tablets (pills) to terminate a pregnancy (the ‘abortion pill’). The first set of tablets is taken orally in the clinic and the second set is taken at home.
Until how many weeks into my pregnancy can I have a medical abortion at Marie Stopes?
Medical abortions are legal between four and nine weeks into your pregnancy. A doctor or nurse is able to assess you to determine the progress of your pregnancy and ensure you are within this period.
If I have a medical abortion, how can I be sure it worked?
If you choose to have a medical abortion through Marie Stopes, we will perform a check-up three weeks after the procedure to ensure that the termination has been successful.
How effective is Marie Stopes’ medical abortion procedure?
Roughly 99% of our medical abortions are successful. In only 1% of cases will the pregnancy continue after taking the pills. If this happens to you, we will perform a surgical abortion at our centre at no cost to you. Note that a positive pregnancy test result within two to three weeks of a medical abortion does not necessarily mean that you are still pregnant. It may be a result of the pregnancy hormones still in your body. It’s essential to come to your three-week checkup so that you can be absolutely certain the procedure was a success.
How is Marie Stopes’ medical abortion procedure different to the procedure followed by illegal providers?
- We do not offer medical abortions after the ninth week of pregnancy, as this is illegal.
- We perform a physical examination, take your medical history and perform tests and scans to confirm the stage of the pregnancy. Illegal providers do not do this.
- We follow vital infection prevention steps, such as wearing latex gloves, having running water and clean linen, and having separate bins for medical waste disposal. Illegal providers do not do this, which means the risk of infection is high.
- We offer counselling and inform you of all your unplanned pregnancy options before terminating.
- We offer follow-up appointments and contact information in case you have questions or experience any complications.
- We provide aftercare services.
- We do not sell medical abortion tablets online without the required clinical precautions.
Still have concerns? Contact Marie Stopes on 0800 11 77 85 or via our online form with your questions or to make an appointment. You can also read more about our safe medical and surgical abortions now.
Source: Marie Stopes South Africa (Safe Abortion and Post Abortion Family Planning)
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