Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties

Abortion Care Services

“Deciding to have an abortion was a tough decision but I knew it was what was best for me. My best friend went with me and she was very supportive. The staff was kind and didn’t judge me. That helped. . . a lot.”

We’re here when others might not be.

Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties provides you with safe, quality care. We give you compassion –without judgment. Here are answers to common questions about our abortion care services.

Abortion care options.

We offer 2 ways to stop being pregnant:

  • A medication abortion involves taking two pills. One pill at the health center and another at home.
  • An in-health center abortion is done by a doctor at a health center.

Both options work well and are very safe.

Our trained health care providers will talk with you about these choices. They will help find the safest care for you. Here are some facts about both options.

Medication abortion (also called the “abortion pill”)

  • Has a high success rate (about 97%)
  • Involves taking one pill at the health center and another pill at home
  • May seem more natural – like a miscarriage
  • Requires you to visit the health center 2 times
  • Can take several hours
  • Can be done when you are up to 10 weeks pregnant
  • Causes more bleeding than in-health center abortion

In-health center abortion

  • Has a high success rate (more than 99%)
  • Is done by a doctor at a health center
  • Takes about 10 minutes (although the full visit may take 3-6 hours)
  • Can be done when you are up to 23 weeks and 6 days pregnant
  • Causes less bleeding than medication abortion

 

Medication abortion

You can have a medication abortion during the first few months if you are free of certain health problems. This involves taking 2 pills to stop being pregnant.

Before taking the pills, you’ll need to:

  • Discuss your options with one of our health care providers
  • Talk about your health history
  • Have lab tests
  • Get an ultrasound
  • Read and sign papers

We’ll give you a medicine guide, instructions, and other papers. Plus, we’ll give you a phone number you can call any time with questions or concerns.

A medication abortion has 3 steps:

Step One
You’ll take the first pill at the health center. This pill stops the pregnancy from growing. You’ll also take some antibiotics to prevent infection.

Step Two
You’ll take the second pill at home 24-48 hours after taking the first pill. This pill pushes the pregnancy out of your womb. You’ll have some cramps and bleeding that last a few hours. Over-the-counter pain medicine can help. You may have some bleeding and spotting for up to a month after taking the pill.

Step Three
A medication abortion works about 97% of the time. But you’ll need to come back to the health center to make sure you are not pregnant. Rarely (about 3% of the time), a medication abortion does not work. If this happens, you can have an in-health center abortion.

In-health center abortion

We provide in-health center abortions to women through the end of the second trimester.

Before the procedure

You’ll need to set up a visit to a health center. Allow about half a day for the visit.

Before the procedure, you’ll need to:

  • Discuss your options with one of our health care providers
  • Talk about your health history
  • Have lab tests
  • Get an ultrasound
  • Read and sign papers
  • Tell us about any health problems you have had. That way, we can make sure the procedure can be done safely.

During the procedure

During an in-health center abortion, we open your cervix slowly using long, narrow rods (dilators). We take out the contents of your uterus using suction. We use either a hand-held syringe or a tube attached to a suction machine.

During the abortion, you will have some cramps. These will likely go away by the time you leave the health center. We can give you medicine to help you relax and ease your pain.

After the procedure

In-health center abortions are very safe. Problems rarely happen. If they do, they can include:

  • Infection
  • Heavy bleeding
  • A tear in the cervix or uterus
  • Cramping and bleeding for 1-3 weeks

If you are concerned about your symptoms, call the health center right away. Rarely (about 1% of the time), an in-health center abortion does not work.

Common Questions

Will it hurt?

The amount of pain depends on the person and the type of procedure. When you come in for your visit, our health care provider will tell you what to expect during and after the abortion. If you are going to have medicine to help you relax or sleep, we will talk to you and write down the facts you need to know.

Is abortion safe?

Yes, abortion is very safe. But there are risks with any medical procedure. These risks increase the longer you are pregnant. Our health care providers will make sure you know the risks before you get a procedure.

How much does it cost?

Our fees are on a sliding scale. That means you pay what you can afford. We also take Medi-Cal and insurance. (Please check with your insurance company before your visit.) Even if you don’t have insurance, we can still help you.

What if I’m still not sure?

Deciding what to do when you’re pregnant is deeply personal. It can be hard. Our health care providers will answer your questions. They can tell you how to learn more about care for pregnancy, adoption, and being a parent. They can also tell you how to get help from others, such as counselors and clergy.

To learn more about all of your choices, or to set up a visit at a Planned Parenthood health center, please call (714) 922-4100.

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