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Abortion MethodsIf you are considering an abortion, the procedures vary depending on the gestational age of the fetus. Here are a list of surgical and non-surgical procedures most performed by abortionists:

Manual Vacuum Aspiration: (within 7 weeks after LMP)-This surgical abortion is done early in the pregnancy. The cervical muscle is stretched with dilators (metal rods) until the opening is wide enough to allow the abortion instruments to pass into the uterus. A hand held syringe is attached to tubing on a suction machine that is inserted into the uterus and the fetus is suctioned out.

Suction Curettage: (within 6 to 14 weeks after LMP)-In this procedure, the doctor opens the cervix with a dilator (metal rod)or laminaria (thin sticks derived from plant material inserted hours earlier). The doctor inserts tubing into the uterus and connects the tubing to the suction machine. The suction seperates the limbs from the body allowing the fetus to pass through the dilated uterine canal.

Dilation Curettage D&C: Similar to suction curretage. In this method the doctor may use a curette, a loop shaped knife, to scrape the fetal parts out of the uterus.

Dilation and evacuation or D & E: (within 13 to 24 weeks after LMP)- This abortion is done during the 2 trimester of pregnancy. In this procedure, the cervix must be opened wider than in the first trimester of pregnancy. This is done by inserting laminaria in the cervix a day or two before the procedure. After opening the cervix the doctor pulls out the fetal parts with forceps.The fetus' skull is collapsed using forceps to ease removal. The final step of the above methods just mentioned is for the nurse to reassemble the parts of the fetus' body on a table to make sure that all of the "products of conception" have been removed. If any fetus body parts or fragments of the placenta are left inside the woman, she is likely to develop a serious infection.

Prostaglandin: These are drugs which produce labor and delivery at whatever stage of pregnancy they are administered. The mother gives birth to a fetus who is so premature he or she cannot survive. Occasionally when this method is used a fetus is aborted alive. And when an abortion produces a live fetus, it is called a complication.

Mifepristone (formerly RU-486) sometimes called The Abortion Pill: First a steroid drug is taken orally which either destroys the fetus' placenta or prevents it from being formed. Then a prostaglandin drug is taken to induce the uterus to contract and vaginally deliver the fetus. This usually occurs at home after extreme cramping and bleeding begin.

Saline Procedure: A concentrated salt solution is injected into the amniotic fluid through the mother's abdominal wall. It takes about an hour for the fetus to die after his skin has been chemically burned and after swallowing and breathing the salt solution. The mother delivers a dead or dying fetus about 24 hours later.

Partial Birth Abortion: (Also known as "late term abortion"). The mother is given drugs to induce labor. The abortionist turns the baby so that it comes down the birth canal feet first. When all but the head is delivered, the abortionist plunges a scissor or similar instrument into the back of the neck at the base of the skull, inserts a tube, then sucks out the baby's brains to collapse the skull, (with no anesthesia to the baby), then completes the delivery of a now dead baby.

Hysterotomy: This is a late term procedure. The mother's abdomen is surgically opened as in a Caesarian section. The baby is lifted out, placed in a surgical bucket and, if not already dead, then it is allowed to die.