Experience with Midtrimester Abortion

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The midtrimester abortion program at a large community hospital was evaluated. During the 3-year study, 1839 patients aborted in the midtrimester by intraamniotic injection of hypertonic saline, prostaglandin F2α or a combination of saline and prostaglandin F2α. The method, using a combination of saline and prostaglandin F2α together with intracervical laminaria, showed significant reduction in the number of failures (4.3 to 1.0%), reduction in the injection-abortion interval from 33.9 to 14.6 hours, shortening of the hospital slay from 21/2 to l1/3 days, minimum incidence of live abortions (0.9%), infrequent need for oxytocin to effect delivery (7.7%); and low rates of hemorrhage (1.5%) and fever (2.8%). The main disadvantage was an increased rate of incomplete abortions (32.3%), which could be reduced to 27% by patient selection.

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