Just as with every important decision you’ll make in your life, before you choose how to handle an unplanned pregnancy you should carefully consider all of your options and arm yourself with the knowledge to help you make the right decision. Whether you choose to become a parent, or you choose adoption, or you choose abortion, you should take the time to learn everything you can about each of your options before making your final decision.
The potential side effects of abortion include both physical and psychological risks that will vary in intensity and duration from one woman to another. The possible side effects will also vary between a surgical abortion and a chemical abortion. Some women will experience only slight side effects from an abortion, while others may undergo a much more difficult recovery. You should discuss the potential for side effects from abortion with your health care professional.
COMMON PHYSICAL ABORTION SIDE EFFECTS
Since RU-486 was introduced in 1988, millions of women worldwide have used the “abortion pill” to terminate pregnancy, although it was not FDA approved in the U.S. until 2000. The FDA’s Mifepristone Medication Guide explains that it is very common for women who use RU-486 to experience these specific side effects:
COMMON CHEMICAL ABORTION SIDE EFFECTS
- Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
- Dizziness and vertigo
- Severe cramps and abdominal pain
- Heavy bleeding
Likewise, there millions of women who have undergone a surgical abortion and experienced certain side effects. These effects can be more intense in later term abortions. The following list indicates side effects that are experienced frequently after a surgical abortion and can last as long as 4 weeks after the procedure:
FREQUENT SURGICAL ABORTION SIDE EFFECTS
- Abdominal cramps
- Nausea, vomiting and diarrhea
- Spotting and bleeding
POTENTIALLY SERIOUS PHYSICAL SIDE EFFECTS
In rare cases, a serious infection can set in after an abortion, and even lead to sepsis and death. This is why it is important to see medical attention if any of your symptoms become severe, or if you experience any of the following conditions:
- Extremely painful abdominal cramps or back pain so severe you have difficulty standing
- Bleeding that is significantly heavier than your normal period
- Odorous discharge
- Fever over 100.5F or fever lasting more than 2 days
- Ongoing pregnancy symptoms
EMOTIONAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL ABORTION SIDE EFFECTS
Just as with the potential for physical side effects, different women will experience varying degrees of emotional side effects from an abortion. However, it is very common for most women to experience some degree of psychological turmoil after an abortion. Some women have reported feeling a sense of relief, and this feeling can be combined with other feelings that can range from mild shame to much more difficult and severe emotions.
Some women may also have a higher proclivity for negative emotions regarding an abortion than others. People with moral, religious or ethical beliefs that conflict with abortion are very likely to feel psychological side effects, as are individuals who don’t have support from their partner, friends and family. Women who decide to have an abortion because of genetic deformity or abnormalities are also prone to negative emotional abortion side effects.
POTENTIAL EMOTIONAL ABORTION SIDE EFFECTS
- Depression and anxiety
- Guilt and shame
- Nightmares and insomnia
- Relationship problems
- Eating disorders
- Suicidal thoughts
AN INFORMED DECISION
[info] Understanding what you may be facing after you have an abortion is an important tool for you to use in making your final decision regarding your unplanned pregnancy. Each woman is an individual who may experience all or none of these potential physical and psychological abortion side effects. [/info]