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Heartbeat possible after vacuum abortion?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2010
Answered : 157 Questions
A girl I know just had a aspirate/vaccum abortion 2 plus weeks ago, 8 weeks in. She is now telling me she went to a dr, and there was still a heartbeat and the abortion was incomplete. We are in different states so I can not verify the follow up visit,but is this even possible?
Can this procedure take place and still have a heartbeat?
Mon, 21 May 2012 in Abortion and Stillbirth
Answered by Dr. Sunil.N 1 hour later

Thanks for your query.

It is unlikely to have heart beat after the above abortion procedure, even if it is incomplete only the remanant of the abortus might be found and the presence of the heart beat indicates life and shows the complete failure of the procedure.

A detailed Abdominal scan will show the activity of the heart and the site of the gestational sac which is essential in this case as we need to differentiate between uterine pregnancy and Non uterine pregnancy, as the non uterine pregnancy can happen and present with heart beat even after the successive procedure.

So after the scan report and the according to the correct gestational weeks a revision aspiration can be done or other suitable methods can be adopted.

Usually the abortus after the procedure will be sent for the pathological examination and it will confirms the completeness of the procedure, if this investigation was done then you can ask for the report which might will help you to know where the failure has happened.

Hope I have answered your query. If you have any follow up queries I will be available to answer them.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Heartbeat possible after vacuum abortion? 1 hour later
Thank you for your answers...but I need I am a little unclear..

She does this procedure (aspirate/vaccum) could the person perfroming this completely miss?? How could this be possible to have a heartbeat after this procedure?

Answered by Dr. Sunil.N 35 minutes later
Hi Again ,

Thanks for your follow up query.

The success of any procedure depends on the skills of the doctor and experience in that field and this procedure done to terminate the pregnancy there is no chance of missing it and it is impossible to have heart beat after the procedure since even minimum damage will lead to the termination of the pregnancy.

As I mentioned earlier only the scan and pathological test done can tell the cause of failure.

If you can access to the medical record, check the procedure done and the remarks and the test results and write me back the reports or mail me the reports to YYYY@YYYY with subject:ATTN Dr Sunil N. Please confirm the mailing of the reports by writing here, so that I reply back to you at the earliest.

Awaiting for your reply.
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