The Risks of Abortion and Its Legal Consequences

There are various reasons a woman has an abortion. However, it should be noted that abortion has both medical and legal risks, especially if it is performed illegally. The risk will also increase if the abortion is not performed by a doctor.

Abortion is the act of aborting the womb to end the pregnancy. There are various reasons for a woman to have an abortion, including pregnancy out of wedlock, economic disability, lack of family support, and problems with her partner. On the other hand, abortion can also be done if the pregnancy threatens the life of the mother or fetus.

Various Abortion Methods

There are two methods used in abortion, namely the use of drugs and medical procedures. The following is an explanation of the two methods:

The method of abortion using drugs

Abortion with this method is carried out by administering oral or injecting drugs that can block the hormone progesterone, so that the lining of the uterus thins. This causes the fetus can not attach and grow in the uterine wall.

The effect of drugs used for abortion will also cause the uterus to contract, so that the embryo or fetal tissue will be expelled through the vagina.

Abortion method with medical action

The most commonly used medical procedure for abortion is vacuum aspiration. This action is usually performed when a new pregnancy enters the first trimester.

There are two tools that are generally used to remove embryos from the uterus through this procedure, namely  manual vacuum aspiration  (MVA) and  electric vacuum aspiration  (EVA).

MVA is done using a suction tube manually, while EVA uses an electric pump.

For abortion at a gestational age of more than 4 months, the medical procedure used is  dilation and evacuation  (D&E). This method uses surgical instruments to open the cervix and suction the fetus so it can be removed from the uterus.

Various Abortion Risks

Just like every other medical procedure, abortion also has risks, especially if it is performed in a place with limited facilities, not by medical personnel, there is no underlying medical condition, and it is carried out using an unsafe method.

The risks of abortion include:

  • Heavy bleeding
  • Injury to the uterus or infection due to an incomplete abortion
  • Infertility
  • Ectopic pregnancy in subsequent pregnancies
  • The condition of the cervix is ​​not optimal due to repeated abortions

All abortion methods have risks or complications. Gestational age also plays a role in determining the level of risk. The older the gestational age, the higher the risk of abortion performed.

Dangerous Abortion Category

The following are categories of unsafe abortion according to the world health organization (WHO):

  • Performed by people who do not have sufficient medical expertise in the field of abortion.
  • Performed in a place with facilities that do not adequately meet hygiene requirements.
  • Performed using inappropriate equipment.

Apart from that, dangerous abortions are also carried out by consuming drugs or using certain assistive devices without a doctor’s supervision.

Abortion for Medical Purposes

In Indonesia, arrangements regarding abortion are contained in Law Number 36 of 2009 concerning Health and the Criminal Code (KUHP). In that law, everyone is generally prohibited from having an abortion.

However, based on article 75 of the Health Law, abortion may be carried out for the following medical reasons:

  • There is an indication of a medical emergency in early pregnancy that threatens the life of the mother and/or fetus
  • The fetus suffers from severe genetic disorders or congenital defects that cannot be cured, making it difficult for the fetus to survive outside the womb
  • Pregnancy occurs as a result of rape which causes trauma

Abortion performed outside of the above conditions is declared illegal. Article 194 of the Health Law stipulates that anyone who is involved in an illegal abortion can be sentenced to a maximum of 10 years in prison and a maximum fine of IDR 1 billion.

Legally Allowed Abortion

Abortion due to rape is specifically described further in Government Regulation no. 61 of 2014 concerning Reproductive Health or PP Kespro as implementing regulations for the Health Law.

Article 31 of the regulation states that an abortion can only be performed at a maximum of 40 days from the first day of the last menstrual period (HPHT) based on a doctor’s certificate.

In addition, Article 34 (2b) also states the conditions for having an abortion, namely the existence of information from investigators, psychologists or other experts that justifies the allegation that rape has occurred.

Therefore, victims need to report incidents of rape as soon as possible to the nearest police station. The police will take the victim to the Polres which has a Women and Children Service Unit (PPA). From the PPA unit, the victim will then be taken to the police referral hospital to undergo a post-mortem examination.

If the victim needs psychological counseling, the PPA unit will make a referral to the Integrated Service Center for the Empowerment of Women and Children (P2TP2A) for further assistance.

Victims of rape or acts of violence can also contact the National Commission on Violence Against Women (Komnas Perempuan) for help and support.

Consider various aspects before you perform or engage in an abortion. Do not let it actually endanger your own life.

You can also consult with an authorized doctor or counselor to find out more about safe and legal abortion, both medically and legally.


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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