Abortion procedure

You must bring your health insurance card or immigration document to your appointment. You must be fasting (have not eaten) from midnight the day before your appointment. You can drink water or clear fluids until 7:00 a.m.

Before the abortion 

You must fill out a medical questionnaire. A nurse will then go over the questionnaire with you, talk to you about different contraception methods, explain how the procedure will be done, and then give you instructions to follow after the procedure. You will also be given information brochures. To put you at ease to ask questions or express your worries or concerns, you will talk with the nurse alone.

If you have any doubts about your decision or if you want support, we recommend that you talk to a social counsellor and that you postpone your abortion, if need be. The counsellor will provide you with support to help you make the best decision for you. When you talk with the counsellor, you can freely express yourself—without judgement—and get the support you need to make your decision. You may find comfort in talking about your situation with someone who is neutral.

In the procedure room 

Note that no one can accompany you in the procedure room. A nurse will be with you throughout the procedure, which lasts about 15 minutes. First, the doctor will perform an ultrasound to determine your week of pregnancy. Then, the doctor will perform a test for gonorrhea and chlamydia (two of the most common sexually transmitted infections).

Throughout the abortion procedure, the nurse will monitor your vital signs (blood pressure, oxygen levels, heart rate and breathing rate) and your comfort.

During the abortion 

A nurse will give you medication to help with your pain and decrease your stress. The doctor will freeze your cervix and then gradually dilate your uterus with dilators (small metal rods). Then, the doctor will insert a cannula (a small tube to aspirate the contents of the uterus) and will then perform a curettage (to remove tissue from the walls of the uterus). The doctor will then perform a second aspiration. This procedure takes 5 to 10 minutes.

After the abortion 

You will be transferred to the recovery room, where you will rest on a stretcher for about one hour. Visitors cannot stay with you in the recovery area, but the person accompanying you to the procedure can visit you for a short time.  The nurse will take your vital signs every 10 minutes and will check your bleeding to make sure that it is light. Before leaving, you will be given instructions and a prescription for the contraception method that you have chosen.

It is legally prohibited for you to drive a car for 12 hours after taking pain medication (Versed and Fentanyl).  Someone must therefore drive you home. It is recommended that you take it easy for the rest of the day and that you don’t take care of young children by yourself. Most women can go back to their usual activities the next day.

If you feel a need to talk about your experience or if you are feeling upset and this lasts for two weeks, contact us to make an appointment with a psychosocial support worker. You may find comfort in talking about your situation with a neutral person who understands you. These sessions are free and confidential.