Second Trimester Abortion

Also referred to as: in-clinc abortion or D&E (dilation and evacuation) procedure.

Gestational Age: 16 to 28 weeks

Typical Cost of Second Trimester Surgical Abortion in Illinois: $500-$3000

What Happens During A Surgical Abortion?

Before having a surgical abortion, you’ll want to schedule a pre-abortion evaluation. At your evaluation, your nurse will confirm the pregnancy and look for any possible risks to your reproductive health. They will also provide testing and treatment for common STI’s to protect against PIDS during your procedure and answer any questions you have. My Future Approved clinics provide pre-abortion evaluations at no cost. Contact us today to find a clinic near you. 

Before the procedure, a doctor  or nurse may give you medication to begin dilating your cervix, or they may use small rods called laminaria to slowly open the cervix. This process can take anywhere from a few hours up to a day.

At the beginning of the procedure, the doctor or nurse will give you pain medication to help ease any discomfort and also provide an antibiotic to help prevent infection. In certain cases, sedation may also be provided. 

During the procedure:

  • The patient will be positioned the same way as in a pelvic exam.
  • A local anesthetic (pain medication is used). Some sedation may be used if requested.
  • If not already inserted, tapered rods (candle-stick shaped) are used to gradually open the cervix. Local anesthetic may be given.
  • A thin, hollow tube connected to a suction device is inserted through the cervix into the uterus to suction out the fetal tissue and placenta.
  • Forceps are inserted into the uterus to grasp larger pieces of tissue and remove them.
  • The uterus is gently scraped and suctioned to remove any remaining tissue. 
  • The procedure usually lasts around 20-30 minutes, but in-clinic recovery may take a few hours.

The surgical abortion procedure usually requires only one office visit. Vacuum- or suction-aspiration is approximately 99% effective. 

What to expect after a surgical abortion?

After a surgical abortion, patients can expect to feel mild to severe cramping. Normal activities can usually be resumed within 24 hours, or after that when the patient feels comfortable. While complications are not very common, it’s important to follow all after-abortion care instruction provided by the doctor.  Some patients may experience abnormally heavy bleeding, fever, or emotional turmoil. In these cases, it’s important to contact a health care provider or visit the ER.


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        1. C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital (May, 2019). Dilation and Evacution (D&E) Retrieved from