I'd like to tell the story of my medical termination of pregnancy at BPAS Streatham in London

By anonymous on 26/07/2019
united kingdom medical abortion bpas

I would like to tell the story of my medical termination of pregnancy at BPAS Streatham in London. I was travelling at the time I found out I was pregnant and wasn't in the UK however they have a Skype phone number available you can call to book your appointment. I called this number and scheduled an appointment for 2 weeks later when I would return to the UK.

The phone call was about 10 minutes long, and the lady over the phone was extremely professional and patient. They asked basic questions about you and your medical history. For me, it was quite quick and basic as I don't have any problems with my medical history - so we booked it. She asked me if I would prefer a medical or surgical procedure, to which I opted for medical & she let me know that it would be covered by the NHS and most probably, I would have the consultation and be given the medication on the same day.

My appointment was at 7:45 am. I have heard that the clinic can get quite busy after this so I asked her for the earliest appointment - and lucky I did! After I arrived, about 20 minutes later, 5 more ladies stepped into the clinic.

They send you an email after you book the appointment which has some basic information and also a form to fill out. I completed this form before I went and brought it with me.

7:40 am - Arrived at the clinic. There was one other patient before me who was completing the forms. They asked me to take a seat in the waiting area and complete a demographics questionnaire and handed me a guidebook.

7:55 am - Called into the nurse's office to complete blood-work, check my height and weight and also my blood pressure. Everything was normal for me, so it was quite straight-forward and didn't take more than 10 minutes. The nurse was very kind and didn't pry.

8:05 am - Returned back to the waiting area.

8:15 am - Called into a second nurse's office. This was to go over the 'pregnancy' and confirming medical history, allergies and doing the ultrasound. She also asked me if I was sure that this was what I wanted and whether I required support after the procedure.

I explained my situation, and she was very objective and non-judgemental. Her style was very professional. She then proceeded to explain the procedure, what was going to happen from here and told me she was going to conduct an ultrasound. Before doing this, she wanted to ask if I wanted to see the ultrasound and also confirm if there were multiple pregnancies.

I have read other ladies' experiences, and this can be a very emotional question so please consider this before you step into the nurse's office!!

She completed the ultrasound and everything was fine to go ahead. She said she needed about an hour to complete the paperwork and prescription, and asked if I could come back at 9:40am. (I went to eat breakfast. You are not required to fast for this procedure.)

9:40 am - I returned back to the clinic. While the receptionist was organising my prescription and paperwork, I saw that the waiting room was completely full. Again - book as early as you can!

She gave me my papers and advised me to walk to the other building where I would be given my medication. I walked over, handed my papers to the receptionist and was asked to go to the waiting room.

Now, this part can be a little emotional. This waiting room was a lot busier and a lot of the girls in there were emotional while some didn't care at all. I hope this is a fore-warning for anyone who may be a little bit extra sensitive on this day.

10:00 am - Called into the nurse's office with one other girl. We went upstairs and she was told to wait in a room, while I was instructed to grab a glass of water and follow the nurse. We went to her office and she explained the process again and gave me some tips from her experience, which I really appreciated.

She explained the medication (2 x antibiotics, 1 x Mifepristone (medication that stops the pregnancy hormone) which I would take on-site, and then she gave me medication to take home - 6 x Misoprostol, 12 x Codeine, 2 x Antibiotics and instructed me to purchase Paracetamol and Ibuprofen. These medications were to be taken the next day.

And that was that for the first day! Quick and easy and out in about 2½ hours.

The next day: 10:40 am - I took the 4 x Misoprostol as well as 2 x Ibuprofen and 1 x Paracetamol. Cramps started around 20 minutes later and bleeding started around 40 minutes later. At one point, I decided to stay on the toilet as it would just be cleaner / easier! I stayed there for about half an hour which might've been the worst of it. The cramps felt like heavy period pain cramps.

2:40 pm - During the four hours, my body would prompt me to go to the bathroom before a clot came out. But this time, when I went to the bathroom, a large sac came out. It wasn't painful at all, but it was definitely bigger. And then it was over. Because I stayed close by the bathroom and listened to my body's prompts, I only went through two nighttime pads during this time.

Extra notes:

  • The cramps lasted for about 5 days after, but as I mentioned, they just felt like period pain cramps. I took some Ibuprofen and Paracetamol but it didn't really do anything, so I started to take period pain pills which made them go away completely.
  • My 'period' lasted for about 8 days after. It was quite heavy for the first 2-3 days, but then it settled into a normal period.
  • The nurse's tips for me were; 

    1. Take the antibiotics again at 8 pm on the day of the consultation;

    2. Take the painkillers as soon as you take the Misoprostol - this will help alleviate a lot of the pain that will come (I believe this is why I barely felt any pain at all!). If you opt for codeine, be sure to read the packaging about how much you can take. I went with Ibuprofen and Paracetamol as I'd never taken Codeine before; 

    3. It's recommended to take 4 x Misoprostol, to begin with, and then if nothing happens, take the additional 2 they give you after four hours. 

    My nurse recommended taking the extra two regardless, as if there is a failure of termination, they will give you an additional 2 Misoprostol to help clear it out. She said there is no risk of overdose otherwise they wouldn't let you take it home. 

I just did my pregnancy test this morning and it came back negative. I hope my experience can help someone who may be a little nervous. What I was most nervous about was not knowing what to expect so I wanted to break it down. Good luck to all ladies reading this.

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