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In the U.S., women have the legal right to choose not to continue an unintended pregnancy. When a pregnancy test comes back positive and the news is unwelcome, consulting a gynecologist quickly can keep certain options open to you, such as a nonsurgical abortion. Talk to the doctor about the pros and cons of choosing a chemical abortion or a surgical procedure.

Availability

Some women prefer to end an unintentional pregnancy as quickly as possible. Surgical abortions are available during the first trimester, which is up to 12 weeks. However, the doctor has to wait until an ultrasound exam can detect the pregnancy, which will be no sooner than five weeks by menstrual age. Up to six weeks of pregnancy, women may choose the chemical method. Second-trimester abortions take place between 12 and 26 weeks of pregnancy. During this time, only the surgical method is available.

Method

Both types require the care of a gynecologist, but chemical abortions won’t take place in the clinic. Instead, the doctor will prescribe medications that you’ll take at home. These medications cause your body to expel the pregnancy in the same way that your uterus naturally sheds its lining during menstruation. After this point, you’ll have another appointment to confirm the termination. The surgical method does not require any incisions—it is minimally invasive. The gynecologist inserts specialized, sterile instruments through the cervix into the uterus to empty the contents of the uterus.

Effectiveness

Both chemical and surgical abortions are highly effective, but the surgical approach does have a slightly higher success rate. On the rare occasion that a woman doesn’t respond well to the medications, she can choose to have the procedure instead.

Safety

Both methods have a well-established, longstanding safety record. It’s well-known that pregnancy termination actually has a lower rate of medical complications compared to bringing a pregnancy to term. There is no scientific evidence to suggest that an abortion will affect fertility or future pregnancies in any way.

Surgical and nonsurgical abortions are available at Washington Surgi-Clinic , up to 26 weeks of pregnancy. Our pregnancy termination services fully comply with Washington, D.C. and federal regulations, and are delivered by friendly, courteous providers. Call (202) 659-9403.

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