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Surgical menstrual regulation

A safe, straightforward way to ensure you are not pregnant after missing a period

Surgical menstrual regulation is a safe and simple treatment.

The procedure will be carried out by an experienced healthcare professional.

We offer surgical menstrual regulation treatment in Marie Stopes centres up to 12 weeks after your last period. The length of time since your last period and your medical history will determine the exact procedure we offer you. But rest assured, surgical menstrual regulation treatment is very safe and complications are rare.

If you would like to learn more about your options, get in touch with our friendly call centre staff.

Call us toll-free for a confidential chat on

08 000 222 333

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Find a clinic that offers safe menstrual regulation treatments and related services.

What is surgical menstrual regulation?

Surgical menstrual regulation is a simple surgical procedure where tissue from the uterus is removed using a gentle suction method.

We typically offer the treatment to women who have missed a period recently, however we also offer the treatment to those who have not had a period in up to 12 weeks. 

The treatment takes between 5-20 minutes, and you can have the procedure with or without anaesthetic. We’ll discuss your choice with you at your consultation and talk to you about pain relief we can give to make things more comfortable.

What to expect on the day

When you arrive at one of our centres, you’ll have a consultation with one of our specialist doctors.

They’ll talk the procedure through with you and give you a medical examination to check you’re fit to have the surgery. Our nurses will also be there to answer any questions.

The procedure

A gentle suction method will be used to remove the contents of your uterus. This is very quick and simple, and takes less than five minutes. You can choose to have this procedure with or without anesthetic.

Frequently asked questions about surgical menstrual regulation

Are there risks involved in surgical menstrual regulation treatment?

Like all surgical procedures, there are some risks associated with surgical menstrual regulation (MR). Whilst it is very rare to have any complications, risks do include damage to the womb or cervix, and uterine perforation (accidental puncturing of the uterus by an instrument used in the procedure).

Generally, MR is one of the safest and most common procedures carried out in hospitals and clinics throughout the world. There is no medical evidence to suggest that surgical menstrual regulation treatment with no complications has any impact on future fertility or any other aspect of general health.

Your consulting doctor will discuss these risks with you on the day and gain your consent to proceed.

How do I prepare for my menstrual regulation appointment?

You must follow these important fasting guidelines prior to your procedure. If you don’t we will need to cancel or reschedule your appointment.

  • If you are having IV sedation or a general anaesthetic it is very important that you do not eat anything (including lollies or gum) for 6 hours prior to your appointment
  • You may drink small amounts of water only, but no other fluid, up to 2 hours before your appointment
  • If you are having a local anaesthetic you may have a light breakfast
  • It is important that you inform us when making your appointment if you are a diabetic
  • If you are having IV sedation or general anaesthetic you must not drive a motor vehicle for 24 hours following your appointment and you must have someone to accompany you home
  • In addition to the above preparations we suggest that you have a bath or shower before you leave home
  • If your arrival is delayed for any reason, please call in advance to let us know.

What do I need to bring to my menstrual regulation appointment?

On the day of your procedure you must bring the following to the clinic:

You may be asked for identification.

  • Any notes, reports or ultrasound scans given to you by your doctor. In WA you also need a doctor’s letter/referral stating that you have discussed your decision to have an abortion
  • Any medication you are currently taking, including inhalers
  • Extra underwear
  • Two sanitary pads (not tampons).

Optional items to bring:

  • Comfortable two-piece clothing such as a short-sleeved top and a skirt, or loose fitting pants
  • Books, magazines or a digital device to read while you are waiting

Please don’t bring:

  • Valuables, including jewellery
  • Children or babies

If you have any further questions in the lead up to your appointment, contact us to speak with one of our friendly client service advisors.

What happens following the surgical MR procedure?

Following the procedure you will spend a short time recovering in a reclining chair or bed. Unless you have any unusual pain or discomfort, you will not be examined before leaving, as it is both unnecessary and uncomfortable so soon after treatment. You will receive aftercare advice and information about the symptoms you may experience following treatment, and what to do if you are at all concerned.

How long do I have to stay at the centre after having menstrual regulation treatment?

 You may leave as soon as you feel well enough, but you will need someone to accompany you home. An approximate timeframe in the centre is around 4 hours, as it is a day surgery procedure. This includes check in, waiting time, consultation time with the nurse/doctor, procedure and recovery time.

Following the procedure, you should arrange for someone to drive you home.

How will my body feel after the procedure?

You may experience some period pain-like symptoms after the surgical procedure, which are best treated with over-the-counter painkillers. It may be comforting to use a heat pack or hot water bottle to help soothe any cramps.

What should I do if I am concerned about something following the treatment?

If you are concerned about anything at all following your procedure, please get in touch with our team.