Abortion Procedures
Manual Vacuum Aspiration (MVA)

Manual vacuum aspiration (MVA) is a surgical abortion procedure used within 1 to 3 weeks following a missed menstrual cycle.

To prepare for the procedure, the doctor first opens (dilates) the cervix by gradually stretching with a series of dilators. A cannula (small tube) and attached syringe is inserted into the uterus. A vacuum is created in the syringe causing the uterus to be emptied and the tissue of the unborn child to be collected in the syringe.

The termination of the pregnancy is to be confirmed by the examination of the contents of the syringe and a sonogram, using a vaginal probe, to make certain that all pregnancy related tissue has been completely evacuated. In addition, for very early stages of pregnancy, the bloodstream is tested to verify the levels of pregnancy-related hormones to try to better verify the termination of the pregnancy.

Possible Complications of Manual Vacuum Aspiration (MVA):

  • Cramping of the uterus or pelvic pain.
  • Perforated uterus (a hole in the uterus) - very rarely.
  • A cut or torn cervix (cervical laceration) - very rarely.
  • Anesthesia-related complication - very rarely.
  • Incomplete abortion - very rarely - pregnancy tissue left inside the uterus, repeated vacuum aspiration may be necessary.
  • Infection - very rarely - medication for the infection, or in rare cases, repeated vacuum aspiration might be needed.
  • Fertility can be diminished in very rare instances as a consequence of infection.
  • Heavy bleeding - very rarely - a hemorrhage develops; medication, repeated vacuum aspiration, surgery or blood transfusion might be needed.
  • Vary rarely - emergency treatment for any of the above problems, including the possible need to treat with an operation, medicines, or blood transfusion.
  • Very rarely - death.




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