If you have had sex and missed a period it is important that you find out whether or not you are pregnant as soon as possible. You can find out if you are pregnant by doing a simple pregnancy test. There is no need to spend a lot of money on this test. In fact, an inexpensive home test kit is more likely to give you an accurate long term result.
If you are pregnant and wish to continue with the pregnancy, you should register your pregnancy with Maternity Services as soon as possible. If, however, you are pregnant but didn’t plan to be, you will need to make some decisions.
One pregnancy choice may be to continue with the pregnancy. Another is to end the pregnancy. You may feel confused, upset, shocked or even dismayed to be pregnant. But however you feel, it is important that you consider all the options open to you. It is important to realise that you have choices. Acting quickly is in your best interests here, as this way you will have more choices open to you.
Your choices are as follows:
- Continue with the pregnancy and keep the baby
- Continue with the pregnancy and have the baby adopted or temporarily fostered
- Have the pregnancy terminated (have an abortion)
Continuing with a pregnancy
More information is available on our Maternity pages.
If you do not wish to have an abortion but couldn’t cope with bringing up a child, then adoption might be the answer for you. You can find more about this from www.fife.gov.uk/adoption
Terminating a pregnancy
Abortion is when a pregnancy is ended so that it doesn't result in the birth of a child. Sometimes this is called 'termination of pregnancy'. On this page, we will talk about abortion, terminating your pregnancy and about making pregnancy choices. If you have made up your mind to terminate your pregnancy, then please fill in the referral form below.
Wish to discuss your choices?
If you are unsure of what you want to do then you can discuss your options at the termination clinic and be given further information and advice. All discussions and treatments are confidential.
If you would like to discuss your options, including termination of pregnancy, please complete the form below.
إذا كنت بحاجة إلى مساعدة لإكمال هذا النموذج، فيرجى الاتصال بالرقم 01592 643355 تحويلة 25445 منالاثنين إلى الجمعة من الساعة 10 صباحا حتى 2 ظهرا، ويمكننا ترتيب حضور مترجم.
Ако Ви е необходимо съдействие за попълването на този формуляр, моля, обадете се на 01592 643355, вътр. 25445 от понеделник до петък, между 10:00 и 14:00 часа, като може да Ви бъде осигурен устен преводач.
Osoby, które potrzebują pomocy w wypełnieniu tego formularza, proszone są o kontakt telefoniczny pod numerem 01592 643355 wew. 25445 od poniedziałku do piątku w godzinach 10.00 -14.00. Istnieje możliwość zorganizowania pomocy tłumacza.
Dacă aveți nevoie de asistență pentru a completa acest formular, vă rugăm să sunați la numărul de telefon 01592 643355, interior 25445, de luni până vineri, între orele 10.00 și 14.00; un interpret poate fi angajat pentru dumneavoastră.
Если вам нужна помощь в заполнении этой формы, позвоните по телефону 01592 643355, добавочный номер 25445, с понедельника по пятницу с 10:00 до 14:00. Вам могут предоставить услуги переводчика.
Please supply as much information as you can, this will allow us to prioritise your appointment appropriately. Once submitted you will be contacted to arrange an appointment. Please note that by using this self-referral service and by submitting your information you are consenting to being contacted and for your data to be processed. Please note that the initial appointment arranged from this referral form is to discuss your options and arrange your treatment should you wish to proceed
If you have difficultly completing the self-referral form or you are not contacted within 3 working days please call 01592 643355 extension 25445 Monday-Friday 10am-2pm for assistance.
Where to get further advice
There are a number of people who can help and advise you. You may wish to discuss things with the clinic nurse or doctor, with your GP or with family and friends. In the end only you can decide what is the best thing for you to do. Many people have faced the same choice and most feel they made the right decision in difficult circumstances.
Before you decide, you need to consider your reasons:
- Is it the only option?
- If you have financial problems – would talking to a social worker help?
- If you feel you couldn’t cope – consider what help might be available – would your family be supportive.
- Would talking to a medical social worker help?
- How you will feel – immediately afterwards and in the long term
- If you are going to tell anyone
- The possible complications of an abortion- although these are rare.
- For further information on what happens when you choose to have a abortion of pregnancy please see the abortion factsheet.
Video kindly reproduced with consent of NHS Lothian
If you want an abortion, the law says two doctors need to review your situation and confirm that the abortion would be legal according to the criteria set out in the Abortion Act. There are time limits to abortion, so the sooner you get advice the better. Remember that the number of weeks you are pregnant is worked out from the first day of your last normal period.
Legally in Scotland, England and Wales, you can have an abortion up to the 24th week of your pregnancy, with the agreement of two doctors. However, it is safest if the abortion happens in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy.
If I choose termination, what type of termination will I have?
If you are early on in the pregnancy, you have a choice about which kind of abortion you have. How much time you have depends on how far on in the pregnancy you are already.
Early medical termination at home (ONLY up to 12th week of pregnancy) - Click arrow right
- This means less than 12 weeks since your last period not 12 weeks since you last had sex.
- A face-to-face clinic visit is not required for most women, however there are some circumstances where we would ask you to attend clinic.
- Medication will be available for you to collect from the clinic.
- At home you will swallow one tablet of mifepristone.
- Then 1 or 2 days later you will place 4 tablets of misoprostol under your tongue for 30 minutes.
- Alternatively, you can insert the 4 tablets of misoprostol into your vagina.
- You will be given a 24-hour contact support number.
- Two weeks later you will take a pregnancy test.
Medical termination in hospital - Click arrow right
You will swallow a tablet of mifepristone and then 2 days later you will be admitted to hospital for treatment with several doses of misoprostol every few hours until you pass the pregnancy.
At this stage of pregnancy, the abortion takes longer and you may experience more pain and bleeding. In most cases the treatment is over in 1 day but sometimes you may need to stay in hospital overnight.
Surgical termination in hospital - Click arrow right
- Surgical abortion involves having a minor operation under general anaesthetic.
- In Fife, a surgical abortion can currently be provided up to 12 weeks gestation.
- You will have to have a scan if you choose a surgical abortion.
- After your scan you will be provided with an appointment to attend hospital, to a day surgery unit.
- Under general anaesthetic the pregnancy is removed using gentle suction. You will require a medication an hour before your operation to help make the operation easier.
- Once you wake up, normally you can go home on the same day.
- You can still expect bleeding after a surgical abortion, lasting for a few days.
What should I expect after an abortion?
- You will have some period type cramping for 1 or 2 days after you’ve passed the pregnancy.
- You can expect to have some bleeding for up to 2 weeks.
- Do not have penetrative vaginal sex until all bleeding has stopped.
- Emotionally you can experience many feelings. It is always important to seek help and support should you be feeling distressed.