FAQ: After Your Abortion
Frequently Asked Questions:
I have been bleeding for a month after a surgical abortion. Is that normal?
Bleeding after a surgical abortion or a Manual Aspiration Procedure is normal for weeks after an abortion, but it shouldn’t continue longer than a month. After one month of bleeding you should get an evaluation from your doctor. Lengthy bleeding could be normal, or it could mean that there is retained tissue. Other signs of retained tissue include abdominal cramping that comes and goes, passing clots, or a discharge with a foul odor. Don’t worry, retained tissue does not cause any harm to you or your uterus. However, it is possible that you will need a repeat procedure.
I had an abortion over a month ago and I still haven’t gotten my period. Is that normal?
It is common to have irregular periods after ending a pregnancy. Sometimes regular periods don’t return for two to three months. Don’t worry, your periods will return to normal. See your doctor for an evaluation if your period doesn’t come in three months.
The only thing to be concerned about with a missed period is a failed abortion or a new pregnancy. If you had a check up after your abortion, you should be reassured that the abortion was successful. If you suspect pregnancy after abortion, it can be difficult to tell if you are pregnant. After an abortion, the pregnancy test can remain positive for over a month. One way to tell if you are pregnant again is to get a pack of two home pregnancy tests. Take one test at least one week after the day you think you conceived. Take the second test one week later and compare them. If the second test is darker than the first (more positive) it is probably a new pregnancy. If the second test is lighter than the first test, the positive pregnancy test is probably reading your hormones from the initial pregnancy.
How soon after conception does a pregnancy test turn positive?
Today, pregnancy tests can start to turn positive 10-14 days after conception. If the test is negative two weeks after unprotected sex, it is unlikely that conception occurred.
Can I get pregnant after abortion?
Yes, definitely. Routine abortion does not cause infertility. You can get pregnant within weeks after an abortion, so it is important to practice prevention right away. Ovulation can occur at any time, even when you are bleeding. If you do not want to get pregnant again it is important to practice prevention. If you do want to get pregnant again and you had a very early medical abortion (RU486) or the Manual Aspiration Procedure, you can conceive immediately. If you had a first trimester surgical abortion (D&C procedure) and are choosing to get pregnant, it is probably fine to conceive immediately, but you may want to wait one month to make sure the uterus is healed.
How do I know if I’m pregnant again after an abortion?
After an abortion, the pregnancy test can remain positive for over a month. One way to tell if you are pregnant again is to get a pack of two home pregnancy tests. Make sure they are the tests that have two lines, and are not digital. Digital tests have letters like “pregnant.” Take one test at least one week after the day you think you conceived. Take the second test one week later and compare them. If the second test is darker than the first (more positive), it is probably a new pregnancy. If the second test is lighter than the first test, the positive pregnancy test is probably reading your hormones from the initial pregnancy.
I am pregnant right after an abortion. Is this a problem?
If you are pregnant right after an abortion, there are no concerns about either continuing the pregnancy or ending the pregnancy. If you decide to end the pregnancy, a second abortion is safe. There is no evidence that repeat abortions cause any problems for future fertility. If you decide to continue the pregnancy there is no reason to be concerned. If the uterus was ready to conceive, it should be ready to carry the pregnancy.