Women's experiences of the final stage of early medical abortion at home: results of a pilot survey

Sharon Cameron, Anna Glasier, Helen Dewart, Anne Johnstone

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background and methodology Research has shown that many women choosing an early medical abortion would prefer to be at home rather than in hospital to expel the pregnancy. A service was commenced at a hospital abortion service in Edinburgh, Scotland, UK that allowed women at up to 56 days' gestation to be discharged home soon after misoprostol administration. During a 3-month period, an anonymous questionnaire of women's experiences was conducted 1-2 weeks after the procedure.

Results During the 3 months of the survey a total of 145 women chose to go home to abort. A total of 100 women completed questionnaires out of 145 (69%) distributed. The commonest reasons given for choosing to go home were: to get home sooner (53%) and to be in the privacy of one's own home (47%). Most (81%) of the women stated that bleeding was either "as expected" (55%) or "not as bad as expected" (26%), and 58% of the women stated that the pain was "as expected" (40%) or "not as bad as expected" (18%). The majority (84%) of the women said that they would recommend this method to a friend.

Discussion and conclusions Discharge home for the final stage of a medical abortion was highly acceptable to women. Since availability is not limited by hospital bed space, more women can be treated by medical methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-216
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2010

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