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Women's preferences for method of abortion and management of miscarriage
  1. Kate Levine, MBChB, Foundation Year 2 Doctor1 and
  2. Sharon T Cameron, MD, MRCOG, Consultant Gynaecologist2
  1. University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK
  2. Dean Terrace Centre, Edinburgh, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sharon Cameron, Dean Terrace Centre, 18 Dean Terrace, Edinburgh EH4 1NL, UK. E-mail: Sharon.Cameron{at}


Background and methodology There is growing interest in the UK towards increasing treatment options for women undergoing abortion and miscarriage. Such options include home medical treatment and surgery under local anaesthesia (LA). This study aimed to gauge views of women undergoing abortion and treatment for miscarriage at the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh towards medical treatment at home, and surgery under LA, to determine whether new services should be developed. The study consisted of a self-administered anonymous questionnaire.

Results A total of 148 questionnaires were completed by women undergoing a medical abortion (n = 97; 66%), surgical abortion (n = 30; 20%) or surgical management of miscarriage (n = 21; 14%). Women having an abortion expressed a future preference for medical abortion in hospital (n = 64; 52%) at home (n = 31; 25%) or by surgery under general anaesthesia (GA) (n = 20; 17%) or LA (n = 7; 6%). Women having a miscarriage expressed a future preference for surgery under GA (n = 7; 35%), LA (n = 6; 30%) or medical management at home (n = 4; 20%) or in hospital (n = 3; 15%).

Conclusions This study shows that medical abortion at home is a potentially popular choice for women having an abortion, with surgical abortion under LA less so. Both home medical management and surgery under LA would appear to be welcome service developments for women needing treatment for a miscarriage.

  • acceptability
  • general anaesthesia
  • local anaesthesia
  • medical abortion
  • miscarriage
  • surgical abortion

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