When Birth Control Fails

Early Abortion Machine Vacuum Aspiration Procedure

October 31, 2018


The early abortion machine vacuum aspiration process is one of three available options to end an early pregnancy (the abortion pill and manual aspiration are the other approaches ). This early abortion procedure can be used 5 to 12 weeks after your last menstrual period.

This procedure is quick (5 to 15 minutes) and may be safely done in a regular medical office or clinic.

Machine Vacuum Aspiration Also Known As

  • Historical abortion
  • Aspiration abortion
  • Machine vacuum aspiration
  • Vacuum aspiration

Before the Procedure

  • An osmotic (cervical) dilator might be put into the cervix to slowly dilate its opening a day before or hours before a machine vacuum aspiration abortion.
  • Misoprostol might be awarded to help soften the cervix.
  • Infection or sedation medication may be provided orally or intravenously. Vasopressin (or a comparable medication) could also be mixed with the local anesthetic to lessen or slow bleeding at the injection site on the cervix.

During the Procedure

  • Your Physician will insert a speculum.
  • The cervix will be washed with antiseptic and numbed using a local anesthetic.
  • The uterus is held in place with an instrument that grips the cervix. The cervix is then dilated to decrease the risk of harm to it.
  • A hollow tube, called a cannula, is inserted into the cervix. It’s attached by tubing to a pump and a bottle.
    • When the pump is switched on, it produces a gentle vacuum which suctions the tissue out of the uterus.

    In this time, you might feel mild to moderate cramping because your uterus contracts when the tissue is removed. There’s some distress, yet the cramping should lessen once the cannula is removed.

    Additionally you might feel nauseous, sweaty or helpless.

    After the Aspiration Abortion

    • After a system vacuum aspiration abortion, the removed tissue may be examined to make sure all of it has been taken out, along with the abortion is complete.
    • Determined by how you’re feeling, you can usually resume normal activities the following day. You will probably need to wait about a week to get sexual activity or to use tampons.

    Possible Side Effects

    • After the procedure, you’ll most likely be bleeding, though there will be less bleeding following the aspiration procedure compared with the usage of the abortion pill. (The bleeding is significantly lighter than a typical interval ). You might also have some.
    • You may be prescribed antibiotics to reduce infection.
    • You might also experience more cramps which could occur for a couple hours (after the aspiration procedure) to maybe a few days (as your uterus is shrinking back to its normal size). Your doctor may suggest acetaminophen or aspirin to relieve this cramping.


    The aspiration process is approximately 98-99% effective. Yet, in rare circumstances, an aspiration procedure may not end a pregnancy. That is more likely to happen in manual aspirations performed before 6 weeks, where about 3% fail and need a repeat procedure.

    If all the tissue hasn’t been successfully removed during a machine vacuum aspiration, a dilation and curettage (D&C) process may  be needed.

    Final Thoughts

    • Machine vacuum aspiration abortion is secure for future pregnancy, as there is minimal probability of developing scar tissue.
    • This procedure is typically safe, effective and has a low risk for complications.
    • Minor complications that may occur include harm into the uterine lining or pus or infection.