Elective Surgical Abortion

The elective surgical abortion is carried out by emptying the uterus for pregnancy tissue.

In this leaflet you can find information about how an abortion is carried out, and what you have to pay special attention to after surgery.

How is an abortion carried out?

The uterus is emptied for pregnancy tissue. The operation lasts for 5-10 min.

If your blood type is Rhesus negative, you will get an injection in connection with the operation to prevent complications during a future pregnancy.

Discomfort or complications

  • The risk of complications after the operation is 3 - 5 %.
  • Complications can be bleeding and/or infection.
  • If the symptoms are caused by bacteria, you will be treated with antibiotics.
  • Perforation of the uterus.

How to prevent infection

  • Avoid bathing in tub, swimming pool and sea water until the vaginal bleeding has stopped.
  • Avoid sexual intercourse without condom until the vaginal bleeding has stopped.
  • Use sanitary towels instead of tampons.

Pain after the operation

  • The first week after the operation you may experience pain corresponding to regular menstruation pain.
  • The tablets you have bought at the pharmacy will be sufficient to relieve the pain in most cases.
  • If you experience severe pain, you should contact a doctor.

After the surgical abortion

  • An adult person must be with you during the first night.
  • You are not allowed to drive a car the first 24 hours.
  • Immediately after the operation you can consume normal food and drinks.
  • A few days after the operation you can resume ordinary activities, such as sport and housework.
  • You can resume work a couple of days after the operation.
  • After the surgical abortion you can have vaginal bleeding like a regular menstruation.
  • Some women experience spotting 2-7 days after the operation.
  • Regular menstruation is restored 6-8 weeks after the operation.
  • If you are going to use contraceptive pills, you must take the first pill the day after the abortion at the latest. If you take it later, you will not be protected from pregnancy the first month.

When shall I take my medication?

The nurse has recommended that you take the first pain-relieving tablets at:


We recommend that you take your medication at the following hours:

Tablet ibuprofen (f.eks. Ipren) 200 mg - take 2 tablets at:
08.00   12.00    16.00    22.00

Tablet paracetamol (f.eks. Pamol) 500 mg - take 2 tablets at:
08.00    12.00    16.00   22.00

Name of contact nurse




What do I do if I feel ill?

You should seek medical assistance, if:

  • You feel unwell.
  • You have a fever of more than 38 degrees C.
  • You have increasing abdominal pain.
  • You have strong vaginal bleeding.
  • You have foul-smelling vaginal discharge.

If you experience problems within the first 24 hours you can contact:

  • The Day Surgery Department from 08:00 a.m. to 15:00 at telephone no. 38 62 10 41.

If you experience problems out of opening hours in the days after the operation, you can contact:

  • The Department of Gynaecology at telephone no. 38 62 31 91.