Abortion is a medical procedure that can be a planned termination of a pregnancy or a pregnancy that ends in miscarriage. However, when most people refer to abortion, they mean an induced abortion. If you’ve had an induced abortion, you may be concerned about what that means for future fertility and pregnancies. This article will explore different types of abortions, future fertility, and what to do if you’re having difficulty getting pregnant after an abortion.
Types Of Abortion
There are two types of abortions: medical and surgical. The method of abortion will depend on how far along a pregnancy has progressed, and timing may also factor in if a person requires a medical or surgical abortion.
A medical abortion occurs when a woman takes medications to induce abortion. Sometimes, a woman may take these medications because she has experienced a miscarriage. The medications help to ensure all products of conception are passed to avoid infection and so that a woman can conceive again in the future.
A surgical abortion is a procedure to either end the pregnancy or to remove remaining products of the pregnancy. As with medical abortions, the approach may depend on timing.
Risks From Abortion
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), an abortion is a low-risk procedure. The risk of death following an abortion is less than 1 in 100,000. The later in her pregnancy a woman has an abortion, the greater her risk for complications; however, the risk of death following giving birth is 14 times higher than the risk of death following an early abortion.
Asherman syndrome is a rare complication that can occur after a woman has a surgical procedure, such as D&C, that can potentially damage the uterine lining. The condition can cause scarring to develop in the uterine cavity. This can increase the likelihood that a woman may have a miscarriage or have problems conceiving in the future.
Outlook For Fertility Following Abortion
According to ACOG, having an abortion doesn’t generally affect your ability to get pregnant in the future. It also does not increase the risks for pregnancy complications if you do choose to get pregnant again. Many doctors recommend using some type of birth control immediately after abortion because it’s possible a woman can get pregnant again when she starts ovulating.
Factors That Affect Fertility
If you do have difficulty getting pregnant after an abortion, it’s important to consider some of the other factors that could potentially affect your fertility, since a past abortion isn’t likely to cause problems conceiving. These factors can also affect fertility:
– Lifestyle habits
– Medical history
– Partner’s fertility
In most cases, having an induced abortion does not affect a person’s ability to get pregnant in the future. However, rare complications such as Asherman syndrome, which can cause scarring in the uterus, can affect fertility. It is important to discuss any concerns with a doctor and to follow their recommendations for post-abortion care and contraception. Other factors that can affect fertility include age, lifestyle habits, medical history, and partner’s fertility. If experiencing difficulty getting pregnant, it is important to consult with a gynecologist or fertility specialist for further evaluation and possible treatment options.