8:42 pm - 06/03/2011

experience with in-clinic abortion, no sedation


hello vp-ers!
I thought I would post this, because I thought It might help someone going through a similar situation. I wasnt able to find many personal experience stories of in clinic abortions without the use of sedatives or anesthesia, and  I thought this might be comforting to some.

First off, I'd like to note that I have a relatively high pain tolerance, and this decision was not particularly emotional for me.  I also live in the united states.

I had decided to get the abortion with no sedation because I didnt have anyone to give me a ride the two hours back to my home.
My appointment was for 11 this morning, and I was told to eat a small easy to digest breakfast. I arrived at the clinic, filled out some paperwork (mainly medical information and privacy policies) then was taken into a room for an ultrasound. Everyone who assisted me today was very comforting and friendly, and made my experience much better. After the ultrasound, where they had given me options about seeing or hearing about the ultrasound, I was taken into another room where I discussed my medical history and birth control options, and my feelings about my decision about the procedure. They asked if i had any questions or concerns and made sure that I knew the procedure would be more uncomfortable without the sedation.

I was then taken into a smaller internal waiting room, where I waited until they called me into another nurses station to take blood pressure and some blood tests to see if I was anemic or rh -. This is where other patients had the IV for their sedation inserted.

I waited in the waiting room a short while longer, before I was taken into yet another room for the procedure. I asked for a moment alone so that I could relax a little before the procedure, they happily agreed and gave me some time which I think helped.

There was a doctor and a nurse who came in and went over the procedure with me again, they assured me that it would not take very long and that I would feel cramping. They did not use anesthesia on my cervix like I thought they would but it was not painful. the whole procedure took about 5 minutes, and while definitely uncomfortable It was not as painful as I had thought it would be. perhaps a 5 on a scale to ten. The nurse offered to hold my hand, and talked me through everything. I was then left alone with the nurse, who I gave permission to stay, and got dressed.

Afterwards I was taken into recovery where they had comfortable chairs with heating pads, where I sat for about 15 minutes. I was monitored very closely during this time and the nurses made sure I was comfortable. After I had checked my bleeding and was given discharge instructions, a nurse made sure I felt okay before walking me out to my vehicle.

Its been 7 hours since the procedure and I have light bleeding and very little cramping.

My first abortion I had the sedation, and very honestly I feel that having it done without the sedation was much more comfortable for myself. i feel like I have been able to recover much more quickly. It made me feel better being awake for the procedure also.

I'd be happy to answer any questions anyone has as well :)
jocelina 4th-Jun-2011 03:34 am (UTC)
Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. I've tagged your entry so that members who may be looking for information about others' experiences with abortion can easily find it. :)

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sunkistfriend forgive my ignorance ... :)4th-Jun-2011 05:19 am (UTC)
I don't understand this part :

I was then taken into a smaller internal waiting room, where I waited until they called me into another nurses station to take blood pressure and some blood tests to see if I was anemic or rh -. This is where other patients had the IV for their sedation inserted.

More specfically, the anemic or rh - . What do these things do involving an abortion?

Another question, how many weeks/days were you when the procedure was done?

Lastly, this was really interesting. Thanks for sharing, OP! :)
lacrimaeveneris Re: forgive my ignorance ... :)4th-Jun-2011 05:57 am (UTC)
I may be off-base, but the testing re: anemia was probably d/t the fact that abortions can sometimes cause bleeding, which can be problematic if the person has anemia (either of the low-iron variety or a hemolytic issue). the Rh antigens are another variety of blood-typing. :)
howfakecanitget Re: forgive my ignorance ... :)4th-Jun-2011 07:59 am (UTC)
I was 7 weeks 4 days. I believe they tested for anemia for the reason lacrimaeveneris stated, and they tested to see if I was rh- because, from what I understood, women with rh- blood need to recieve a rhogam shot after their procedures, in order to prevent future problems with pregnancy. I just googled rhogam and found more information on it if you are interested :)
lacrimaeveneris Re: forgive my ignorance ... :)4th-Jun-2011 05:51 pm (UTC)
Ah, thanks for the info on rh/rhogam. I didn't know that! :)
fallconsmate Re: forgive my ignorance ... :)4th-Jun-2011 05:39 pm (UTC)
My best friend in high school was adopted. Her mother had 15 miscarriages. Before Rh testing was done, a negative blood type woman who had a child with a positive blood type man ran a huge risk of forming antibodies to positive blood type. If their children were all negative blood type, it was no problem. If one was positive blood type, the first one was ok, but since some blood passes over into the mother through the placenta, the mother's blood forms antibodies against the positive blood.

If the mother doesn't get a RhoGram shot after the first child (negative blood type mother, positive blood type child) to prevent the forming of antibodies, the antibodies attack the next positive blood type fetus, resulting in a miscarriage. And it *must* be given shortly after the first child is born.

With my friend's mother, she kept having miscarriages because she was a devout Catholic woman who would not use birth control. (this was in the 60's) My friend and her brother were adopted, and the family priest finally counseled them to take permanent steps about her fertility because she was needed to take care of the children she had, and each miscarriage ended up as a longer hospital stay. Fortunately, this doesn't have to happen any more.
howfakecanitget Re: forgive my ignorance ... :)4th-Jun-2011 07:45 pm (UTC)
you explained that much better than I could have, thank you :)
fallconsmate Re: forgive my ignorance ... :)4th-Jun-2011 09:39 pm (UTC)
you're welcome. :)

i met my friend's mother when we were 14. and i saw the sadness in her eyes when she saw a baby, no matter how much she loved her chosen children. i'm glad that doesnt have to happen any longer. (i know it still does in countries where healthcare isnt as available, but it isnt something that always happens any longer.)
thedorkygirl 4th-Jun-2011 06:15 am (UTC)
Thank you for sharing your experience.
treiale 4th-Jun-2011 08:23 am (UTC)
Thank you for sharing this, really.
maradydd 4th-Jun-2011 11:46 am (UTC)
Thanks for posting this, it was really informative!

I'm curious -- you mention that you were at 7 weeks 4 days, which AFAIK is within the timeframe for a medical abortion. Was there a particular reason why you went with a surgical one? My only experience has been with medical (once with methotrexate, once with mifepristone, both because Depo failed on me) -- I didn't even know that surgical-without-anesthesia was an option. Now that I've found a BC solution that actually works for me, I hope I won't be in that position again, but it would be great to know more about the ins and outs of surgical vs. medical and why someone might choose one over the other. TIA!
misspaigeb 4th-Jun-2011 01:52 pm (UTC)
I'm not the OP, but have thought about this a lot because I know I'd get an abortion if I were to get pregnant, and I think I would choose the surgical just because it is faster and there is a smaller failure rate. There is something like an 8% failure rate for the medical abortions, which means one would have to go back and do a surgical anyway. Also, with the medical, it can take days for the tissue to pass, and many people don't have that long to wait around and see what happens (for whatever reason.) I know my cousin chose the surgical over medical because she would rather have it done in 5 minutes than wait all day at home for something to happen.
fushigi_na_chou 4th-Jun-2011 05:36 pm (UTC)
I wanted to add that, though I've never had an abortion myself, I've live with someone who has, and she went the medical route. She was in pain for days (probably about a week), and I think the entire experience was more stressful for her than if it had been done in 5 minutes. I know everyone is different and reacts differently to different procedures, but it is something to consider when weighing the pros and cons of medical vs. surgical.
howfakecanitget 4th-Jun-2011 07:39 pm (UTC)
I chose the surgical abortion for the same reason the other commenters posted. Today is the day after the procedure, and I have hardly any bleeding and hardly any cramping. Im moving out of state in a couple of days and would not have been able to go for my follow up appointment that is nessesary with the medical abortion, and the several days of bleeding and cramping to release the tissue would not have made my 15 hour trip very fun.

I also didnt know that it was an option until I discussed it with my provider, and they said they have to offer it, because of people who can't get rides, or who have adverse affects to sedation, or who just dont want it. They highly suggest it because for many people its an emotional experience and the sedation helps relax them, and it makes the procedure very difficult to remember, but for me, I definitely preferred the experience without sedation.
howfakecanitget 4th-Jun-2011 07:44 pm (UTC)
Also, they cost the same amount. At least in the state I live, the only reason a surgical procedure costs more is because of the cost of sedative added on.
atalanta0jess 5th-Jun-2011 02:46 pm (UTC)
I'm really glad to hear that going without sedation worked out ok for you, and you were able to get yourself home safely.
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