In many countries around the world, you can legally terminate a pregnancy with an abortion. While many pro-life movements show pictures of nearly viable fetuses being aborted, most abortions happen when the fetus is still just a few cells. When getting an abortion, you have the option of using two different methods.
A medical abortion uses medication to terminate the pregnancy. If the pregnancy is not too far along, this option can be cheaper and allow you to avoid the potential risks of surgery. Once you have a medical abortion, you will need to return to the doctors office to make sure that your body expelled everything completely.
The other option for an abortion is an aspiration, or surgical, abortion. This type uses medical tools that are inserted in the womb to remove the products of conception. Depending on how far along you are, the cost and what your doctor recommends, you could be recommended to use either option.
How Much Is an Abortion?
The cost of getting an abortion is made up of several factors. First of all, it matters where you are. Some areas have higher costs, and certain doctors may charge more for the procedure. In states where the clinic also has to have hospital admitting rights and other onerous requirements, it may be expensive to both get the abortion and get to the abortion center.
Likewise, the cost of an abortion can depend on how far along your are. In the first trimester, an abortion typically costs $350 to $500. If the pregnancy is past 20 weeks, it will cost at least $1,000 and may cost much, much more. If you are getting an abortion, it is important to check with your current state laws to see where you can get one, how much it will cost and if there are specific requirements (such as a 24-hour wait after the initial consultation). It is important to find out all of this information as soon as possible because it can drastically impact your ability to seek treatment. If you are in a state that bans abortion very early in the pregnancy, you may have to travel to another state to get an abortion if you wait too long. At the very least, an abortion will most likely cost more if you have to have it later in the pregnancy. Also, keep in mind that you should factor in travel and transportation costs into the overall cost as well.
You can expect the following costs for abortion-related procedures:
Pregnancy Test: Often Provided for Free
Counseling About Your Options and an Ultrasound: $100
Medical Abortion at 0 to 9 Weeks: $440
Surgical Abortion at 0 to 11 Weeks: $440
Surgical Abortion 11 to 15 Weeks: $550
Surgical Abortion at 16 to 17 Weeks: $650
Surgical Abortion at 18 Weeks: $1,000
Surgical Abortion at 19 to 20 Weeks: $1,350
Surgical Abortion at 21 to 22 Weeks: $2,000
What Is a Surgical Abortion?
Other than finding out the answer to “How much is an abortion?”, you will also need to figure out how much an abortion will likely end up costing. A surgical abortion has to be done at your doctor’s office, a hospital or a clinic. Plan out several hours of your day because there may be an initial consultation and a brief wait in the waiting room. Afterward, it may take some time for the anesthesia to take affect. The procedure itself only takes a few minutes, but you will also need to sit and wait at the facility as the effects of the anesthesia wear off afterward.
In a surgical abortion, tools are used to remove the fetus from your body. An aspiration abortion or a dilation and evacuation may be used. With an aspiration abortion, the doctor first exams your uterus. You may then be given pain medication and sedated so that you are awake and relaxed. A speculum is then inserted with a numbing injection for your cervix. Afterward, the cervix is dilated so that it is more open. Next, a tube is threaded through the cervix to reach your womb. A suction device is turned on to gently, efficiently empty the uterus. A curette may also be used to remove any tissue on the uterine lining and ensure that the uterus is actually empty.
With dilation and evacuation, your doctor will also examine your uterus. You will then be giving pain medication through pills or an IV. A speculum is inserted into your body. Then, absorbent dilators are brought into your cervix. As they absorb fluid, they will start to grow larger and open up your cervix. In addition to pain medication, you will also be given antibiotics to prevent a future infection. A numbing injection is used near your cervix and suction instruments as well as medical tools are used to empty the uterus.
Both types of surgical abortions are extremely effective, and they are generally considered safe. There are a few potential side effects that your doctor will inform you about, and you may need to make an appointment with your doctor for a check-up later on.
What Is a Medical Abortion?
Known as the abortion pill, misoprostol or mifepristone can be prescribed by a doctor and taken at the clinic. This pill is only effective early on in a pregnancy, so it is generally unhealthy to use and unavailable for use after 11 weeks. An initial pill is generally given at the doctor’s office. Then, a second pill is taken later at home (make sure to follow your doctor’s instructions about when to take the pill).
The abortion pill may be taken vaginally or allowed to dissolve in your mouth depending on your doctor’s instructions. Within the first four hours after taking the pill, the abortion process will begin in your body. You may experience heavy bleeding and cramps for several hours or days. It is important that you follow your doctor’s instructions exactly and return to the doctor if you have any unexpected or severe symptoms. In general, you will have to return to the doctor a week after taking the pill to ensure that the pregnancy was successfully and completely terminated.
When done at the right time and used correctly, this procedure is about 97 percent effective. It is important that you return to the doctor for your follow-up appointment to make sure that all of the tissue was expelled. If it was not expelled completely, you may need an aspiration abortion to prevent an infection or other complications.