Pregnancy and dating

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The health risks of abortion depend principally upon whether the procedure is performed safely or unsafely.

The World Health Organization defines unsafe abortions as those performed by unskilled individuals, with hazardous equipment, or in unsanitary facilities.

An abortion may be caused purposely and is then called an induced abortion, or less frequently, "induced miscarriage".

It requires a smaller incision than a caesarean section and is used during later stages of pregnancy.

In places lacking the necessary medical skill for dilation and extraction, or where preferred by practitioners, an abortion can be induced by first inducing labor and then inducing fetal demise if necessary. This procedure may be performed from 13 weeks gestation to the third trimester.

An abortion is medically referred to as a therapeutic abortion when it is performed to save the life of the pregnant woman; prevent harm to the woman's physical or mental health; terminate a pregnancy where indications are that the child will have a significantly increased chance of premature morbidity or mortality or be otherwise disabled; or to selectively reduce the number of fetuses to lessen health risks associated with multiple pregnancy.

Medical abortions are those induced by abortifacient pharmaceuticals.

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