Religious Tolerance logo



horizontal rule

Sponsored link.

horizontal rule

Manual Vacuum aspiration (or Mini-vac) is an abortion technique that is gradually becoming widely available in North America. It was developed in the 1960's as a technique that could be used in the third world, because it does not require electricity. A hand-held syringe creates a tiny, localized vacuum that removes the embryo. It is as powerful as the suction provided by conventional vacuum pumps, but is more focused. The amount of cervical dilation is less than with a conventional abortion because of the smaller size of the instrument. This generally creates less discomfort. It is a simple and safe procedure that gynecologists can use in their office without a general anesthetic. It typically takes less than two minutes. This technique seems to be becoming more common in the US and Canada, but there do not appear to be any available data on the numbers of abortions performed using this method.

The technique is limited to the interval between 3 to 6 weeks of gestation (as measured from the day that the last period ended). It is becoming more widely applicable because of improvements in early pregnancy detection. Home pregnancy tests can now reliably detect a pregnancy as early as 8 days after conception (perhaps a week before the first missed period). Women who suspect that they may be pregnant are taking home tests and then asking for abortions as soon as possible.

horizontal rule

A gynecologist at Canadian clinic, who remained anonymous because of threats and a series of attempted murder of abortion doctors in that country, said: "At four weeks, the placenta and the entire membranes around the embryo are the size of a lentil... I don't know that anyone has ever demonstrated objectively that it's less traumatic [than the conventional suction technique]. But I tell you, it looks less traumatic. It's just this 50 cc plastic syringe which looks really benign and gentle, compared to a large vacuum cleaner sized mechanical pump which looks kind of menacing. There's no noise at all with the syringe."

horizontal rule


bullet Sean Fine, "Abortions Obtained Soon After Conception", The Globe and Mail, Toronto ON, 1997-DEC-23
bullet "Early Surgical Abortion," Allegheny Reproductive Health Center,

horizontal rule

Site navigation: Home page > "Hot" topics > Abortion > Facts > here

horizontal rule

Copyright 1998 to 2004 incl. by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Last updated: 2004-MAR-9

Author: B.A. Robinson

line.gif (538 bytes)

horizontal rule

Go to the previous page, or return to the Abortion facts menu, or choose:


Go to home page  We would really appreciate your help

E-mail us about errors, etc.  Purchase a CD of this web site

FreeFind search, lists of new essays...  Having problems printing our essays?

Twitter link

Facebook icon

GooglePage Translator:

This page translator works on Firefox,
Opera, Chrome, and Safari browsers only

After translating, click on the "show
original" button at the top of this
page to restore page to English.