Early Surgical Abortion
First Trimester Surgical Abortion
Aspiration suction abortion up to 14 weeks after the last Menstrual period (LMP)
This surgical abortion is done throughout the first trimester. The patient typically receives pain medication and antibiotics. For very early pregnancies (4-7 weeks LMP), after local anesthetic is given, a long, thin tube is inserted into the uterus and the baby is suctioned out. Later in the first trimester, the cervix needs to be opened wider because the fetus is larger. The doctor inserts a stiff plastic tube into the uterus and applies suction by either an electric or manual vacuum device. The suction pulls the baby's body apart and out of the uterus.
Later Term Abortion
Abortion methods for 2nd & 3rd trimesters
Dilation & Evacuation (D&E) 15 weeks LMP & up
Most second trimester abortions are performed using this method. The cervix must be opened wider than in a first trimester abortion because the baby is larger. Up to about 16 weeks gestation, the uterine contents are suctioned out, and the remaining fetal parts are removed with a forceps (grasping tool). After 16 weeks, much of the procedure is done using forceps to grasp, tear, and pull the baby's body apart and out through the cervical opening, as suction alone will not work due to the baby's size.
LAbor Induction: 2nd & 3rd trimester
This procedure induces abortion using drugs to cause labor and eventual delivery of the baby and placenta. Like labor at term, this procedure typically involves 10-24 hours in a hospital's labor and delivery unit. Digoxin or potassium chloride is injected into the amniotic fluid, umbilical cord, or fetal heart prior to labor to avoid the delivery of a live fetus.
D&E After viability 23 weeks lmp & up
This procedure typically takes 2-3 days and is associated with increased risk to the life and health of the mother. Because a live birth is possible, injections are given to cause fetal death. Medications (digoxin and potassium chloride) are either injected into the amniotic fluid, the umbilical cord or directly into the baby's heart, causing his/her death. The remainder of the procedure is the same as the second trimester D&E.
Source: Before You Decide/Care-Net