The Abortion Procedure – Q & A

Answers are provided by Dr. Beverly McMillan, an obstetrician and gynecologist.   What is an Abortion? "Abortion is a termination of pregnancy that can be either spontaneous or induced. Spontaneous abortions are often called miscarriages. Induced abortion artificially ends the pregnant and, depending on how fat the pregnancy has advanced, determines the method used. The most commonly performed induced abortion procedure is the suction D and C (dilation and curettage) method. It is performed up to 12 weeks of pregnancy and sometimes up to 14 weeks. After that, a D and E (dilation and evacuation) abortion is usually performed. Abortions done after 20 weeks are usually done by some type of chemical to induce labor early, either with prostaglandin or a poisonous salt solution." Does an abortion Hurt?  "Yes it hurts because dilating the cervix. or the neck of the womb, has to be done causing cramping pain.  Usually medication is given to help relieve this but the patient is usually awake.  A local anesthetic is injected into the cervix to numb it up.  This helps some." Is there much bleeding? "Bleeding depends a lot on how far advanced the pregnancy is.  In abortions performed up to 12 to 14 weeks the bleeding is usually less than six to eight ounces of blood.  Abortions done after 14 weeks can be much more bloody." Is the baby human or just a "glob of cells?" "The baby is human from the moment of conception. When the one cell it is made of has characteristic 46 chromosomes of the human species, it is unique from that moment.  Eighteen days after conception your...