Medical abortion

An abortion that uses medication to end a pregnancy.

What is medical abortion?

A medical abortion offers you a safe, straightforward way to end a pregnancy. Medical abortion involves taking two lots of medication that end a pregnancy.

The first pill that’s taken, called Mifepristone, blocks the hormone needed for pregnancy to occur.

24-48 hours later, a second pill is taken called Misoprostrol, which causes the body to expel the pregnancy from the womb.

This two-stage dose of medication is a low risk, non-surgical way to terminate an early pregnancy. Many women opt for this kind of abortion because it’s safe, non-invasive and very reliable.

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If you're ready to visit us, book an appointment to reduce your waiting time at the clinic. Once you've filled out the form, a member of the team will be in touch to confirm your appointment.

What to expect on the day

When you arrive at one of our centres, you’ll have a consultation with one of our experienced service providers.

They’ll check your status of pregnancy if you don’t know the date of your last period. They’ll also discuss your medical history, talk about contraceptives, and go through the medical abortion process with you in detail.

If you’re less than nine weeks’ pregnant, you’ll take your first pill at this visit and your second at home.

Most women experience some bleeding and cramping within one to four hours. Significant cramping usually only happens in the first 24 hours and we can give you some pain relief to help with this.

Our nurses will be there to answer any questions and to help you feel relaxed and comfortable before, during and after your treatment.

Frequently asked questions about abortion

What do I need to bring to my appointment?

We’ll ask you to bring the following things with you to your appointment:

  • Any medication you’re taking (including inhalers)
  • Any information you have from your doctor about any medical conditions
  • Your referral letter from your doctor or family planning clinic, if you have one
  • Any notes from a previous consultation
  • An extra pair of comfortable underwear
  • Your glasses and contact lens kit if you wear contact lenses. You may need to remove your contacts before your treatment
  • Your payment method if you’re paying for your abortion.

Can I arrange for someone to come with me?

We recommend you bring a friend or member of your family with you when you have your abortion.

They can stay with you in the waiting area, but not during your consultation or treatment. Our nurses and healthcare assistants will be there to support you.

If you’re under 16, you’ll need an adult (someone 18 or over) to accompany you home after your treatment.

How long will take the recovery?

Most women recover quickly from an abortion.

Chances are, you will too. But there are a few things you can do to make the experience easier. Avoid having sex for two weeks to minimise the risk of infection. Start using contraception straight away to protect yourself from another pregnancy. And keep an eye on your bleeding. Most women bleed for one or two weeks afterwards and it’ll feel a bit like having a period.

Above all, if you have any worries at all – whether that’s to do with your physical or emotional wellbeing – get in touch with us or your GP. We offer confidential counselling if you want to talk about how you’re feeling, and our aftercare line is open 24 hours a day.

If you would like to learn more about your options, get in touch with our friendly call centre staff.

Call us toll-free for a confidential chat

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