Surgical and Medical Terminations: Key differences

Surgical Termination

  • Very high success rate >99%
  • Only 1 visit to the clinic (2 if over 16 weeks) – consultation and procedure done on the same day
  • Requires surgical procedure and anaesthesia
  • Anaesthesia required – intravenous twilight sedation or local anaesthetic
  • Procedure performed by a trained doctor while you are asleep, making it painless
  • This is a very fast procedure, performed in 5-10 minutes
  • May be performed up to 20 weeks from your last menstrual period
  • Post-procedure bleeding usually minimal, with heavy flow and cramps in the following days

Medical Termination

  • High success rate 95%
  • Multiple client visits are required to check progress
  • This method uses drugs – surgical intervention usually not required (<5%)
  • Anaesthesia not required unless termination fails, and surgical intervention is required (<5%)
  • Resembles a natural miscarriage – pain and bleeding are variable
  • Following medication intake, termination occurs at some point within 5 weeks
  • May only be performed up to 9 weeks after last menstrual period
  • Bleeding may last longer than in surgical termination and patient may see pregnancy tissue