Abortion Methods: Summary
- Dilation and Curettage (D & C)
- The Cervix is dilated with a
series of instruments to allow the insertion of a curette (a looped shaped
steel knife). The unborn child is then cut into pieces and scraped from the
uterine wall. Bleeding is usually profuse. A nurse will normally reassemble
the body parts to be sure that all are removed; otherwise infection will set
- Suction Curettage, or Vacuum Aspiration
- The cervix is dilated as in a D & C,
then a tube with a very sharp edge on the tip is inserted into the uterus
and connected to a strong suction apparatus. The suction device, similar to a
conventional vacuum cleaner but 29 times as powerful,
tears the unborn child apart and sucks the pieces into a jar.
- Menstrual Extraction
- A very early suction abortion, often done
before the pregnancy test is positive.
- Dilation and Evacuation (D & E)
- At 12 to 20 weeks. (By week 12, the baby's bones are hardening and can no longer be pulled apart with suction. Abortion is now
achieved by dismemberment.) A seaweed-based substance, called "laminaria", is
inserted into the cervix, causing dilation. The next day forceps with sharp metal teeth are
inserted and parts of the baby's body are torn away with a twisting motion and
removed piece by piece. At this age the head is usually too large to be removed
whole, and must be crushed and drained before taken out. D & E's
are preferred by abortion advocates because, unlike other second trimester
methods, they insure
the baby's death. The nurse then reassembles the body parts to be sure that all
- Salt Poisoning, or Saline Injection
- Used after 16 weeks (four months)
when enough fluid has accumulated. A long needle injects a strong salt
through the mother's abdomen into the baby's sac. The baby swallows
this fluid and is poisoned by it. It also acts as a corrosive, burning off the
outer layer of skin.
It normally takes somewhat over an hour for the baby to
die from this.
Within 24 hours, labor
will usually set in and the mother will give birth to a dead or dying baby.
(Quite frequently these babies are born alive. They are usually left unattended
to die. However, a few have survived and later been adopted.)
- Hysterotomy, or Caesarean Section
- Used mainly in the last three
months of pregnancy, the womb is entered by surgery through the wall of the
abdomen. The technique is similar to a Caesarean delivery, except that the
umbilical cord is usually cut while the baby is still in the womb, thus cutting
off his oxygen supply and causing him to suffocate.
Sometimes the baby is removed alive and
simply left in a corner to die of neglect or
- Prostaglandin Chemical Abortion
- This form of abortion uses chemicals
developed by the Upjohn Pharmaceutical Co. which cause the uterus to contract
intensely, pushing out the developing baby. The contractions are more violent
than normal, natural contractions, so the unborn baby is frequently killed by
them -- some have even been decapitated.
Many, however, have also been born alive.
Posted 5 Sep 2000.
Copyright 1995 by Ohio Right to Life