Making DecisionsAfter you have had a pregnancy test and know for sure that you are pregnant, you should carefully decide whether you want to continue the pregnancy and become a parent, place the child for adoption, or whether you want to have an abortion. Counselors at a family planning clinic can help you decide what you want to do. All counseling is confidential. It is important not to delay your decision. If you decide to continue the pregnancy, it is very important for you to see a doctor as soon as possible for prenatal care. If you decide to have an abortion, it is best to have the procedure as soon as possible after you realize you are pregnant. Abortions can legally be performed up to 20 weeks, however, the more advanced your pregnancy, the more expensive and increased health risk exist. West Alabama Women’s Center performs abortions up to and including 20 weeks. ...view middle of the document...
You can be assured that all information is strictly confidential and your privacy will be respected and guarded. Alabama State laws prevent same day procedure unless counseling material is received by certified mail. There is a 24-hour waiting period. Married women do not need their husbands' consent; however, parental or Judicial Consent is necessary if the patient is under the age of 18. Alabama law requires only one signature for parental consent.Procedures
Abortions are performed for patients who are 4 to 20 weeks gestation. Ultrasound is performed to determine exact length of pregnancy and is included in the fee. The Center utilizes the most modern and by far the safest Surgical Abortion procedure, with terminations monitored by ultrasound. We use the simplest procedure, therefore, discomfort is kept at a minimum. Analgesics and anesthetics are used. We also offer Medical abortions (methotrexate, mifepristone) to patients who are candidates for that procedure as well as Emergency Contraception (Morning After Pill).Determination of Length of Pregnancy
Before any abortion can be done, a medical professional must confirm that a woman is indeed pregnant and determine exactly how long she has been pregnant. The length of a pregnancy is usually measured by the number of days that have passed since the first day of the woman's last menstrual period (abbreviated as LMP). Medical abortions can be performed as early as a pregnancy can be confirmed. In fact, the shorter the time that a woman has been pregnant, the better the medications will work. Because they do not work as well later in pregnancy, medical abortion is not usually an option after 9 weeks (or 63 days) LMP. After that, surgical abortion is the safest and best option.Counseling
Counseling Services are provided to discuss the abortion procedure, the patient's feelings, risks and complications, alternatives to abortion if desired, birth control and follow up care. Information concerning these issues is also available to friends and family of the patient.