Second and Third Trimester Abortion

Abortion by Induction

Fetal demise is provoked by injection of medication into the fetal heart. Medications used are digoxin or potassium chloride. The cervix is softened with medication and laminaria. Labor is induced and the fetus is delivered. In some cases, the induction method fails or cannot be used. Therefore, an extraction procedure is used to remove the fetal pieces using forceps. A C-section may be performed as well but is very rare.

Risks and Considerations for an Induced Abortion

  • Like labor at term (40 weeks pregnant), this procedure typically takes 10-24 hours in a hospital’s labor and delivery unit. Digoxin or potassium chloride is injected into the amniotic fluid, umbilical cord or fetal heart prior to labor to avoid the delivery of a live baby.
  • Pitocin, misoprostol and sometimes mifepristone are used to induce labor. Oral or intravenous pain medication may be used. This however increases your risk of rupturing your uterus.
  • Potential complications include hemorrhage and the need for blood transfusion, and a retained placenta.