Do you need to have an ultrasound after doing a medical abortion?

If you do not have symptoms of a complication, it is not necessary to have an ultrasound after a medical abortion.

By having an ultrasound, you can determine whether the pregnancy has ended even a few days after the abortion, especially if you are unsure whether the abortion was successful. You can also have a home urine pregnancy test about 3-4 weeks after taking the medicines. If you take the home urine pregnancy test before waiting 3 weeks, it can show a false result that a woman is pregnant, because there are still pregnancy hormones in her body.

Medical abortion, like miscarriage, is a process that takes place over time and the body might take several weeks to fully expel all the tissues and products in the uterus. This is normal. If you want, you can have an ultrasound about 10 days after taking the medicine just to confirm as soon as possible that the pregnancy has ended.

Even if the pregnancy has ended, many women will still have tissues and blood inside the uterus for several weeks. If you do not have any symptoms of complications like strong pain in the belly, continuous fever, very strong bleeding, smelling vaginal discharge, there is no need for any surgical intervention, like vacuum aspiration, even if the doctors suggest this. One can wait until after the next menstruation or take 2 tablets of Misoprostol under the tongue.[1]


[1] Rachael L. McEwing, Nigel G. Anderson, Jeremy B. A. Meates, Richard B. Allen, Greg T. M. Phillipson, and J. Elisabeth Wells. Sonographic Appearances of the Endometrium After Termination of Pregnancy in Asymptomatic Versus Symptomatic Women JUM May 2009 28:579-586