Surgical abortion

A safe, straightforward way to end a pregnancy through surgery.

Surgical abortion is a safe and simple procedure used to terminate a pregnancy.

The pregnancy is removed from the womb by an experienced doctor using a syringe.

We offer surgical abortions in Marie Stopes centres up to 23 weeks + 6 days of pregnancy. How pregnant you are and your medical history will determine the exact procedure we offer you. But rest assured, surgical abortion is very safe and complications are rare.

If you would like to learn more about your options, get in touch with our friendly call centre staff.

Call us toll-free for a confidential chat


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What is surgical abortion?

Surgical abortion is a simple surgical procedure where pregnancy tissue is removed from the womb using a gentle suction method.

We offer surgical abortion as a day treatment in our centres, usually in the first trimester of pregnancy, but also later than that (up to 23 weeks + 6 days’ gestation).

The treatment takes between 5-20 minutes, and you can have the procedure with or without anaesthetic (depending on your gestation). We’ll discuss your choice with you at your consultation and talk to you about pain relief we can give to make things more comfortable

What to expect on the day

When you arrive at one of our centres, you’ll have a consultation with one of our specialist doctors.

They’ll talk the procedure through with you and give you a medical examination to check you’re fit to have the surgery. Our nurses will also be there to answer any questions.

Less than 12 weeks’ pregnant

If you’re less than 12 weeks’ pregnant, a gentle suction method will be used to remove the pregnancy from the womb. This is very quick and simple, and takes less than five minutes. You can choose to have this procedure with or without anesthetic.

More than 12 weeks’ pregnant

If you’re more than 12 weeks’ pregnant, we’ll give you some medication to prepare and dilate your cervix two to three hours before the surgery. Depending on your gestation, you'll be given sedation or a general anesthetic. The suction process will take between 10-20 minutes.

After your treatment, you will spend some time in our recovery lounge, having some light refreshments, until you’re ready to go home.

Looking for more information about our abortion services?

You’ll find answers to the questions people ask most about abortions here. If you can’t find out the information you need, please call us on 0345 300 8090.

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