Abortion of Foetus during the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Trimester

The term ‘abortion’ is one of the sensitive topics popularly debated controversially all over the world. Many nations still treat it as a murder of life, while some say it is the fundamental right of woman to decide on her living. In India, abortion of baby was accepted to be legal only in 1971, and the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act was issued with a goal to decrease the percentage of illegal abortions as well as maternal mortality all over India. Absorption is the procedure for removing or eviction of foetal embryo from the womb after its formation, literally leading to the death of a life.

The procedure for abortion is chiefly determined by the weeks of development of the foetus. A woman usually has the option to go formedical abortion or surgical procedure. Before deciding upon the options, the healthcare provider would suggest for a for determining the viability of pregnancy (whether it is uterine or non-ectopic pregnancy) and fixing the pregnancy date.

Type of Abortion Procedures for the 1st Trimester

Mostly, woman can choose either surgical or medication-based abortion procedures when she is in the 1st trimester stage. Medical abortion procedures are possible until 9 weeks of gestation.

  • Manual Vacuum Aspiration (MVA):

    This procedure can be used for the early gestational period, such as 3 to 12 weeks from the last menstruation. It is regarded to be less invasive and so local anaesthesia is administered on the cervix.

  • Mifepristone and Misoprostol:

    This is a medical abortion procedure applicable for the first 7 to 9 weeks of gestation.

  • Methotrexate and Misoprostol (MTX):

    This is a medical abortion procedure applicable until 9 weeks of pregnancy.

  • Aspiration:

    This is a surgical abortion procedure utilised for termination of foetus until 16 weeks since the last periods. It is also called as dilation and curettage (D&C), suction curettage or vacuum aspiration.

Type of Abortion Procedures for the 2nd Trimester

Medication-based procedures cannot be used during 2nd trimester. The abortion procedures possible during the 2nd trimester include:

  • Dilation and Curettage (D&C):

    This surgical procedure is opted for terminating pregnancy before the completion of 16th gestational week. It is otherwise known as vacuum aspiration or suction curettage.

  • Dilation and Evacuation (D&E):

    This is a surgical procedure chosen for terminating pregnancy after 16th week of gestation.

Type of Abortion Procedures for the 3 rd Trimester

Abortionsduring 3rd trimesterare regarded as illegal in several states of India except for specific medical conditions. However, the area of viability is important in most medical communities, that is 24 gestational weeks or the period before the ending stage of 2nd trimester is the maximum period for abortion. Hence, any procedure used during the 3rd trimester is determined based on the law of the nation.

Third Trimester Procedures

  • Dilation and Extraction:

    This surgical procedure is used for terminating pregnancy after 21 gestation weeks. This procedure is otherwise termed as Intact D&X, D&X, Intrauterine cranial decompression and partial birth abortion.

  • Induction Abortion:

    This is a surgical procedure performed rarely in woman where potassium chloride, urea or salt water is administered into her amniotic sac, prostaglandins are given through the vagina, and pitocin is supplied intravenously. Sometimes, this procedure is used during the end of 2nd trimester too.