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Health Facts on Abortion

Abortion, understood as when a pregnancy is forcibly ended, is mainly done to avoid childbirth due to certain personal choices. Reasons for abortion include, unwanted pregnancy caused by improper family planning, when the baby in the womb has severe abnormalities or when it is medically dangerous for the mother to deliver a baby.


Mainly there are two types of abortion treatment.

1. Medical abortion: The abortion pill

It is safe to take the abortion pills by determining the time of pregnancy in two categories:

A) Abortion pill for up to 10 weeks

B) Abortion pill from 10 weeks for up to 24 weeks

  • Medication can cause the woman's uterus to contract and push out the fetus.
  • At least two visits to the health clinic are needed.

2. Surgical abortion

It is a quick minor surgical procedure done to avoid pain which may occur with Abortion pills. There are two types of surgical abortion:

A) Vacuum aspiration up to 15 weeks

  • Can remove the fetus (unborn child) by gentle suction.
  • Upon doctor’s advice, most of the patients are sometimes likely to go home, the very same day.

B) Dilatation and evacuation for pregnancy between 15 and 24 weeks

  • Done with general anesthesia (Unconscious state).
  • Fetus is removed using narrow forceps passed through the neck of the womb and some gentle suction.


Facts on Abortion

  1. In 2014, on an average 56 million cases of abortion occurred in the world. The number includes both safe and unsafe abortions.
  2. In 2014, nearly one in 20 women in the US had an abortion by the age of 20 (5%), and about one in five women (19%) also had an abortion by the age of 30, some (24%) even had them at the age of 45 years.
  3. According to a study published in 2015, an estimated 15.6 million abortions were performed in India.
  4. The UK, England and Wales have about 190,000 abortions every year, approximately every one in five pregnancies are aborted here.
  5. From 56 million abortions worldwide nearly 25 million abortions were unsafe. In those, nearly 8 million were carried out in the least- safe environment.
  6. In 2015 nearly three out of four unsafe abortions occurred in Africa and Latin America. The risk of maternal deaths due to unsafe abortions is the highest in Africa.
  7. Every year, nearly 4.7%- 13.2% of maternal deaths are due to Unsafe abortions.
  1. In India, a majority of abortions (81%) were done using medication also called medical methods of abortion, or MMA.
  2. In the US, medication abortion has been approved for abortions up to 10 weeks’ gestation. Mifepristone and misoprostol are the two drugs approved for this type of abortion by the FDA.
  3. Nearly 31% of all non-hospital abortions are medication abortions in US.
  4. Abortions, when done during the first trimester ( up to 14 weeks of gestation since the first day of the last menstrual period), are considered to be safest as they carry minimal risks.
  5. Abortion associated death risk may increase with the length of the pregnancy. Death risk ranges from 0.3 for every 100,000 abortions at eight weeks to 6.7 for every 100,000 at 18 weeks.
  6. In the UK, nearly 90 percent of abortions take place very early in pregnancy- in the first 12 weeks.
  7. In the US, as of January 1, 2018, all except ten states have imposed one of five major abortion restrictions. According to this, unnecessary regulations on abortion clinics cannot be put, couples or single mothers will have compulsory counseling sessions to dissuade them from having an abortion, a waiting period is compulsory before an abortion is carried out and parental involvement is required before a minor citizen obtains an abortion and also there needs to be prohibition on the use of state Medicaid funds to pay for medically necessary abortions.
  8. In the UK, Abortion is legal up-to-the 24th week of pregnancy. After 24 weeks of pregnancy, abortion is very uncommon, and it can only take place if there is a serious risk of maternal death or if the unborn child has severe disabilities.


  1. What is abortion? - (https://www.bpas.org/abortion-care/considering-abortion/what-is-abortion/)
  2. Preventing unsafe abortion - (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs388/en/)
  3. Induced Abortion in the United States - (https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/induced-abortion-united-states)
  4. Abortion - knowing the facts - (https://www.fpa.org.uk/sites/default/files/abortion-knowing-the-facts.pdf)

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