A “medical” termination may only be performed early in pregnancy. This involves taking 2 different types of medication, the first an “anti-progesterone” to stop the pregnancy growing and the other a ‘prostaglandin-like medication’ (taken 36-48 hours later) to expel the pregnancy tissue from the uterus. Basically it mimics a miscarriage. Bleeding and pain are variable. Blood tests at a local pathology provider and a follow-up appointment with us is necessary 2 weeks later to confirm a successful pregnancy termination.
While this method of terminating a pregnancy has been widely used in many counties including the USA, UK, NZ, India and China, it is now available in Australia from doctors who have completed an online training program, and who have the appropriate medical indemnity insurance. Our doctors, who specialise in termination of pregnancy, had been granted special authorisation to aminister these medications for terminating a pregnancy in February 2010 by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), and are therefore very experienced in delivering this method. Doctors at GCA have the correct insurance to conduct a medical termination of pregnancy as well as a surgical termination of pregnancy, plus they have the knoweldge and ability to deal with complications and failures. It is also important that you seek a “lawful” termination of pregnancy and at GCA, we are very knowledgeable of the national and state laws.
In comparison to surgical termination of pregnancy, medical termination / medical abortion has more drug-related side effects (such as nausea, diarrhoea, dizziness, headache and fever). Pain and bleeding are also more common and more prolonged, with up to 90 percent of women experiencing cramps and an average of 14 to 17 days bleeding, with ranges from 1 day to 69 days. The timing of the expulsion of the products of conception is not clear and there is at least a theoretical risk of foetal deformity if the termination fails and the pregnancy continues.
If you are considering having a medical termination of pregnancy, prior to you being administered any medication you will have a consultation with the doctor. The doctor will take a medical history and conduct an ultrasound to determine the site of the pregnancy and to make sure it corresponds with dates. It is particularly important that you are less than 9 weeks pregnant. You will also be asked to provide a urine sample before seeing the doctor for the purpose of routine chlamydia screening (the most common and often undetected sexually transmitted infection). A blood test will also be taken during your consultation. The consultation will also include discussion surrounding the pregnancy and reasons for the termination.
Ten to twelve days after your consultation you will be required to attend a local pathology collection centre near you for a further blood test. You will then be required to attend a follow up appointment with us two weeks after your initial appointment for a repeat ultrasound and review of your blood tests to confirm a successful termination.
Compulsory Reading prior to Medical Abortion
Listed below as PDF documents are patient documentation forms. If you are coming to see us, we advise that you print and complete the forms prior to the consultation and bring them with you.