Third Trimester Procedure

Albuquerque, New Mexico only

24 weeks LMP (5.87 cm BPD) and Above

Third trimester induction abortion procedures are performed beginning at 24 weeks LMP (5.87 cm BPD). Prior to arrival in Albuquerque, a recent hemoglobin or hematocrit, blood pressure, and basic health and personal history will be obtained. This information is essential for our scheduling process. Our physicians will review this information to assure that we can see you safely as a patient. For abortion past 24 weeks in pregnancy, the process takes three to four days. Because of this, we will need to schedule our patients for a morning abortion appointment early in the week.

At our office, the size of the pregnancy will be determined by an ultrasound done on the first day. Also, your medical history will be assessed. Counseling and lab work follows. After meeting with the doctor and signing consents, the physician can estimate the time needed for a safe process. This information, means you will need to anticipate a longer office visit and a process that will take three to four days.

The process is started by inserting laminaria to gently dilate the cervix. Laminaria is sterile, compressed seaweed that is inserted into the cervical canal. The laminaria expand by absorbing natural moisture in the cervix. On the first day, an injection of Digoxin will be administered to stop the fetal heartbeat.

A second, and possibly third, insertion of laminaria will be used to further dilate the cervix. Dilation of the cervix is achieved gently and gradually, as needed over the next two to three days. In addition, medication is used to help soften the cervix. This process may need to be repeated the following day if the cervix has not made enough progression.  Appropriate dilation of the cervix must be obtained to reduce risks and complications. Therefore, once the cervix is ready, medications will be administered which will start labor and result in the delivery of a stillborn.

For more information about our fetal indication program click here.

Abortion past 32 weeks (7.97 BPD):

  • For women over the 32nd menstrual week, BPD 7.97 and greater, we provide services on a case-by-case basis. The process is the same as above. Because each case is unique, we ask that women with fetal or maternal indications call our office for a phone evaluation. We will help if we can.

Postoperative Instructions

  • After the abortion, you may eat and drink normally. It is best to avoid strenuous activity, avoid lifting over 10 pounds, and avoid spending a lot of time on your feet. Be guided by how you feel.
  • Please put NOTHING in the vagina for at least 7 days. No tampons or vaginal intercourse
  • Use sanitary pads only
  • Do not douche, go swimming, or take a tub bath- showers are fine.

Follow up appointments are required, and are available at no additional cost here at our office or at our sister clinic in Dallas if it is close to your home. If our locations are not in a convenient location, we can assist to find a location that works best for you.

Every woman experiences bleeding differently. For example, bleeding can range from a heavy period to none at all, and vary from day to day. An increase in activity may increase this bleeding. We recommend women to slowly increase their activity back to their normal level. Your next normal period should begin in 4 to 8 weeks. Apart from this, a pregnancy test may still show a slight positive in this time as the pregnancy hormones leave your body. If you do not have a period within 8 weeks from the procedure date, please call us.

It is possible to get pregnant before your first period begins. Therefore, if you want to avoid another pregnancy, you should use the birth control method which has been advised for you by our counselors and/or your physician. Hormonal birth control methods such as pills, the Depo Provera injection, the Nuva Ring, and the Ortho Evra Patch, Nexplanon, Mirena, may change your cycle. If you have questions, please call the office.

Be sure to report:

  • Bleeding is heavier than the heaviest flow of a normal period.
  • Continued bleeding – longer than two weeks (although it is normal to spot longer)
  • Temperature is ever 100.4 degrees or more. You have any foul-smelling vaginal discharge.
  • Severe pain, or pain unlike menstrual cramps.
  • Maxi-pad soak through in 1 hour or less
  • Clots that are quarter-sized or larger

Please contact our office for a fee quote. The National Abortion Federation (NAF) has access to funds for women in financial need. As a member of NAF, we are able to help you assess if you qualify for funding. We can also help you contact any other appropriate funding agencies.

$ Please call our office updated pricing information

Copyright - Southwestern Women's. All rights reserved. Licensed by Texas Department of State Health Services, ASC license # 130019