How things work

Abortion methods

Vacuum aspiration

Practicalities
A vacuum aspiration can be carried out in Belgium up to 12 weeks after fertilisation. This corresponds to 14 weeks of amenorrhoea (absence of menstrual bleeding). In the latter case, you should count from the first day of your last period if you have a regular cycle. An ultrasound scan is the best way to determine how long you have been pregnant. The whole procedure takes approximately 15 minutes, and the actual treatment only takes a couple of minutes. After the treatment you can rest at the LUNA abortion centre for a short period. In all you will be at the LUNA abortion centre for about an hour and a half.

How does it work?
You sit in a gynaecological examination chair. The doctor inserts a speculum, a local anaesthetic is administered to the cervix which is then dilated, after which a thin tube is inserted to aspirate the uterus. The injections used to administer the local anaesthetic are not usually felt to be particularly painful. However, the dilation of the cervix does generally give rise to a sensation like slight period pains. When aspiration is applied to the uterine cavity the womb contracts and this can lead temporarily to moderate to severe cramps, which will gradually reduce after the treatment.