Abortion and STIs/STDs

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are also called sexually transmitted diseases or STDs. Roughly 1 in 4 women are infected with an STD. Having an undetected sexually transmitted disease at the time of an abortion procedure can lead to complications. Two of the most common STDs are chlamydia and gonorrhea. Both are bacterial infections that live in the vaginal opening. Sometimes people who are infected with these or other STDs are asymptomatic, so they are unaware they are carriers of the disease. This is a huge risk factor during an abortion. 

How abortions cause serious STD health risks

Certain surgical abortion procedures have the potential of pushing chlamydia and gonorrhea infections deep inside the uterus, where they can cause serious problems. If left untreated, a chlamydia or gonorrhea infection can lead to Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID). PID is dangerous when left untreated. It can lead to infertility, ectopic pregnancy, chronic pelvic pain, and the formation of abscesses. 

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 1 out of every 4 women between the ages of 14 and 19 has at least one STD. If you receive an abortion without knowing your STD status, it can cause you serious health complications.

Most common STDs/STIs

Women are more likely than men to experience long-term health consequences from an STD/STI. Having an abortion while you have an STD/STI increases your chances of experiencing serious medical consequences.

The most common STD/STIs women should test for before having an abortion include: Chlamydia, Genital Herpes, Hepatitis B, Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), Gonorrhea, and HIV/AIDS.

Most STDs are treatable. Early detection and treatment are the key to recovery and for preventing further complications if you plan to seek an abortion.

How to get free STD/STI testing

While Care Net does not offer abortions at any of our locations, our Albuquerque pregnancy help center offices can test for common STDs/STIs. If you are considering having an abortion, you must get tested for STIs first. This testing is free when performed in our offices.

If you test positive for either, you will need to receive treatment before you can proceed with an abortion. While we do not offer other forms of STD testing in our Care Net offices, we can refer you for additional STD testing, which we recommend before having an abortion. We can help you locate the best options for testing.

You also must inform your abortion provider if you tested positive for any STDs, which includes the type of treatment you received. Having this information will help your abortion provider make the best decisions about surgical methods to use or avoid during your procedure. 

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The information and graphics contained on this site are for informational and educational purposes only. This site is designed to promote broad knowledge of various pregnancy or sexual health topics and general understanding concerning pregnancy. It is not intended to be a substitute for legal advice, or professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Pregnancy and other health issues need to be diagnosed by your physician or other qualified health care provider in person. Home tests and online discussions do not qualify as diagnosis or advice for treatment. Make an appointment with one of our center medical team or with your physician to discuss any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment, and before undertaking a new health care regimen. Follow your medical provider’s instructions and never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking it because of something you have read on a website or social media.