Early Pregnancy

(Early pregnancy FAQ)


Misinformation has made its way into the media landscape. We’ve all seen the images of pregnancy termination that involve a fully developed fetus. This is simply NOT what’s happening in early pregnancy. In early pregnancy – which is 10 weeks or less from the first day of your last period – the body is primarily just preparing itself for pregnancy. This tissue looks more like a period than a pregnancy.

What is early pregnancy?

Early pregnancy is any pregnancy under 12 weeks, calculated from the first day of your last period. At this stage, the uterus is preparing itself to support the pregnancy. The pregnancy itself is not yet developed. If you’re at this stage, you have more options for safely and gently ending pregnancy. Pregnancy termination can be similar to having a miscarriage if you choose from one of the two natural abortion methods we offer.

How do I know how far along I am?

To calculate your pregnancy, count from the first day of your last period. For example, if the first day of your last period was on January 1st, you would be 5 weeks on or around February 6th. You can also schedule an ultrasound appointment with us to verify your pregnancy dates.

Can you tell me the day I conceived?

Conception happens when you ovulate. This is usually about two weeks after your period (or two weeks before your missed period). An ultrasound is the most accurate way to determine conception. It is usually accurate by about 3 days. One of our physicians can help you determine when you may have conceived.

What are my options if I want to end my early pregnancy?

If you have only missed one or two periods, ending a pregnancy can be safe, simple, and natural through our 2-5 minute noninvasive SofTouch® method. For those who want to bring about a miscarriage in the privacy of their own home over a 24-72 hour timeframe, the Abortion Pill is another natural choice. Whichever option you select, our team of woman-only physicians and assistants are ready to support you with attentive, expert care.

What does the tissue look like?

Every month the uterus develops a lining called the endometrial lining or menstrual lining. This lining sheds naturally with the monthly period.
If conception occurs, the lining does not shed. After the missed period, the lining is now called “decidua” and it becomes thicker to get ready for the pregnancy.

At five weeks of pregnancy (one week after the missed period) a gestational sac forms. The gestational sac is a thin membrane filled with fluid; this sac would later develop into the amniotic sac. Initially, the gestational sac is the size of a pea.

At seven weeks of pregnancy, (three weeks after the missed period,) the gestational sac is the size of a small grape. Cells start to cluster inside the sac, and can be identified on ultrasound, but they are too small to be seen with the naked eye.

At nine weeks of pregnancy, (five weeks after the missed period,) the gestational sac is the size of a half dollar. An early visible embryo begins to form at around 10 weeks of pregnancy.