Abortion Procedures

How abortion is performed

When it comes to abortion procedures, the type of abortion usually determines how abortion will be. For instance, abortion could be through drugs or through surgery. Most times, it is a surgical abortion that usually involves procedures. Surgical abortion is very common in Australia, and in most cases, it is a completely safe procedure as long as it is a medical professional that performs it. However, this doesn’t mean it can’t have complications. Like all surgeries., it comes with risks.


The procedure for surgical abortion generally starts with the anaesthetic that you will get. The hospital or clinic will generally tell you the available anaesthetic and how to prepare. Types of anaesthetic include;

General Anaesthetic

This anaesthetic will make you fully unconscious and is rarely used in abortion. It is generally used for high-risk surgical operations.

Nitrous oxide gas – or any similar gas

With this type of anaesthetic, you’re in a calm and sedated state while being fully awake. It is a state of twilight sleep.

Local Anaesthetic

The anaesthetic will be injected into the cervix to ensure the area is numb. Thus, you won’t feel anything in that area throughout the operation

Local Anaesthetic with Intravenous Sedation

This combines local anaesthetic with sedative medication injected into your veins through the intravenous line

Surgical Abortion Methods

There are two methods of surgical abortion, the one for a maximum of 12 weeks of pregnancy and the one for pregnancy for a longer period.

For a pregnancy that has not exceeded 12 weeks, the method used is a suction aspiration. The cervix opening enlarged in a gradual process using rods of different sizes, and when it is wide enough, a slim tube is inserted in the uterus. The pregnancy, which comprises the foetus and placenta, is then removed through gentle suction. Once complete, the medical practitioner checks that the uterus is empty using a curette. It generally takes below 15 minutes to complete the procedure.

Surgical abortion for over 12 weeks of pregnancy

When the pregnancy is more than 12 weeks, the procedure is also similar to the first, but the preparation of the cervix differs.

It may include taking Hormone-blocking tablets orally or vaginally. These tablets soften the cervix and become effective after about two hours, after which the regular suction procedure is used.

Another option is to insert a special device into the cervix opening, which will swell and further widen the cervix sufficiently for the abortion to be performed.