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Unplanned pregnancy is common and there are a variety of possible outcomes. Some women/couples will decide to continue with the pregnancy after a time of consideration and reflection. Some women are in a less fortunate position either medically, socially, mentally or financially and feel that termination or abortion is the option for them.

Termination can be done either medically with tablets or surgically under sedation as a procedure in a licensed clinic or day hospital. Medical termination essentially means that the woman has a miscarriage at home after taking the tablets. This method suits women who have a stable home environment and supportive partner or friend.  Usually women need 2 days off work although bleeding persists for longer. Medical termination can be done up to 9 weeks gestation. Beyond this then surgical procedure is warranted.

Initial consultation involves discussion and counselling to establish suitability, consent, and preparation of what to expect over the following 2 weeks. US is then done in house to accurately estimate the age of the pregnancy, followed by testing of rhesus blood type and a urine test to confirm pregnancy and test for chlamydia. A script is then created and instructions given regarding which chemists stock the drugs (not many chemists are authorised to dispense this) and time of dosage.

Medical terminations are effective and well tolerated but do have a failure rate. This means that it is very important to come back for follow up 2-3 weeks later to check that the pregnancy test is negative and the US shows an empty uterus. This is also a good time to plan contraception.


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