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FAQS (Frequently Asked Questions)

How long has Azia Clinic been in business
Azia Clinic has been providing professional abortion services to the Port Elizabeth area since 1988.

How long has Azia Clinic been in business
Yes. This test may detect pregnancy as early as five days after the expected and missed menstrual period. We also have the EPT (Early Pregnancy Test) available for a fee. This test can detect pregnancy as early as 10 days after conception. All testing can be performed on a walk-in basis.


Is everything confidential
All of our services are completely confidential. Please read our privacy policy for more information.

Do I have to give you my real name?
Your correct name, address, phone number and medical history are important for many reasons, particularly in case of an emergency.

Will my parents find out?
At this time we are not required to give parental notification for services you receive. Therefore, we recommend that you talk to a parent or adult in your life, but we do not disclose any information.

If a patient is a monir, do they need to have parental consent to have an abortion?
No. Minors do not need parental consent. The law, however, is subject to change at any time.

Does my partner need to know?
No. Your partner does not need to know. Your services are completely confidential.

Making an Appointment

Do I have to make an appointment for an abortion?
Yes. Our facilities offer different kinds of appointments on different days.

How soon can I get appointment?
Appointments are available for the same day or the following day, depending on our surgery schedule.

General Questions about Abortion

Up to how many weeks do you terminate a pregnancy?
Azia Clinic terminates pregnancy up to 23.5 weeks.

How early can I terminate a pregnancy?
In most cases the abortion can be performed as early as the EPT pregnancy test shows positive results. You just have to be far enough in the pregnancy for it to be visible on ultrasound, which is usually about 5 to 6 weeks.

What is the difference between a D&C and a medication abortion?
A D&C (Dilation and Curettage) is the surgical procedure to terminate a pregnancy. A D&C can be performed up to 13 weeks gestation. The non-surgical procedure is accomplished with medication and offered up to 9 weeks gestation.

When will I have my next period?
Normally, your regular menstrual cycle will resume 4 to 8 weeks after the abortion.

What happens if I have some complications or problems after my abortion?
Professional medical staff is available to our patients 24 hours every day. If you have any questions or are experiencing post-operative problems, please call the clinic directly or use our number +27 76 885 9058/ +27 71 303 3529 at any hour of the day or night. Our trained staff will speak with you and may ask that you return to our clinic for evaluation.

Is it dangerous to have an abortion?
An abortion is an extremely safe surgical procedure. Less than 1% of patients experience any complications at all. Fewer risks exist with abortion than childbirth. The physician performing the surgery is highly skilled and specializes in this procedure.

Will somebody talk to me before the procedure?
Yes. Our admitting staff will review your options and medical history, pre- and post- operative instructions, method of payment and birth control information. Our clinician will perform a physical examination prior to the procedure and will answer any additional questions you may have.

How will you know how far I am in my pregnancy?
Our clinician will perform a pelvic exam and ultrasound to determine the length of gestation.

What if I do not get my period soon after the abortion?
In most cases, your menstrual cycle will begin 4-8 weeks after the abortion. If you do not have a period in 8 weeks, please call us.

Birth Control

Do you provide me with birth control?
Yes. We offer birth control to our patients immediately after the abortion, if they are medically eligible. Your clinician will evaluate your needs and assist you with the appropriate birth control method.

When do I start with my new birth control?
If you have had a first trimester surgical abortion, you should start your new birth control on the first Sunday after your surgery. If you have had a second trimester abortion and were given birth control pills or Ortho Evra, you should start your new birth control on the first Sunday after your surgery. If you have had a second trimester abortion and were given the Nuva Ring, you should start on the second Sunday after your surgery. Starting birth control as soon as you can after surgery may help to reduce the amount of bleeding you have after surgery and regulate your periods sooner. If you are using your birth control exactly as it is prescribed (including taking your pills at the same time every day), it will be effective after using it for one week.

About Surgical Abortion

Will it hurt?
If you have chosen general anesthesia you will be completely asleep during the surgery so you will not feel any pain. After the procedure you may experience mild to moderate cramping. In most cases ibuprofen (Motrin/Advil/Midol), naproxen (Aleve) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) will alleviate the cramping. If the cramping is not alleviated with these remedies, you should call us immediately. Please do not use heating pads for cramps after surgery as that may cause heavier bleeding.

How long will I be under general anesthesia?
You will be asleep for 5-10 minutes for a first trimester abortion, or 10-15 minutes for a second trimester abortion.

I am afraid I wont wake up after general anesthesia. Can that happen?
The anesthesia that we offer is safe, effective and short acting. You will be asleep for 5-15 minutes depending on the procedure. There is always some degree of risk with any surgery. Serious complications with general anesthesia are very rare in our facilities. Complications may occur if a patient has ingested food or liquid within 8 hours of surgery. Tell our staff if you have had prior complications with anesthesia or if you have had anything to eat or drink within 8 hours prior to your surgery.

How long will I bleed after surgery?
In most cases, the patient experiences bleeding for up to 2 to 3 weeks after the surgery. However, some patients do not experience any bleeding and other patients have spotting or bleeding off and on. If you have any questions about what is normal after your surgery, you can always call the clinic. A 24-hour on-call service is available for after hours.

When can I return to work?
The majority of our patients return to work or school the following day. The admitting and medical staff will explain the DOs and DONíTs after surgery.

Can I have someone come into the surgery or recovery room with me?
Your driver, friend or family member may not enter the surgery or recovery room with you, as we must protect the privacy of all of our patients. We encourage your driver to wait for you in our reception area. If this is not possible, your driver can return for you upon completion of your appointment. It is important that your driver wait for you until your medical history and physical exam have been completed.

After surgery, when can I have sex?
You should not have sex for two weeks after your procedure. We recommend that you abstain from sexual activity for two weeks because you are more susceptible to infection following your procedure.

Can I use tampons after my surgery?
You should not use tampons for two weeks after surgery. Sanitary napkins should be used to decrease the possibility of infection and to monitor the amount of bleeding.

How effective is a surgical abortion?
In most cases, a surgical abortion is 100% effective. A small percentage of cases will require a reaspiration if unusual bleeding occurs or if there is retained tissue.

How effective is a surgical abortion?
Most patients experience some cramping. If the cramping is not relieved by over the counter medications such as Tylenol or Advil, we ask the patient to call our +27 76 885 9058/ +27 71 303 3529 numbers. You may take a shower or tub bath after surgery. Do not douche, use tampons or have intercourse for two weeks after surgery. Avoid any products that contain aspirin as aspirin promotes bleeding.

Why cant I eat before surgery?
When general anesthesia is administered, gag reflexes are temporarily suppressed. If food or liquid remain in the stomach, vomiting can occur resulting in asphyxiation (choking).

What happens with the fetus that was removed from me during the abortion?
The tissue is sent to a licensed and accredited laboratory for analysis and is disposed in accordance with the mandates of state law.

How will I know that the abortion was successful?
The contents of the uterus are sent to a pathology laboratory for analysis. The results of the analysis are sent to the doctor within 7 days of the procedure. We will contact you if you need to come in for an evaluation to make sure that the abortion was successful. In some cases, the doctor may request that you return to the clinic 2-3 days after your abortion for a blood test for that purpose.

Can I exercise after surgery?
You should avoid strenuous physical activity or heavy lifting (over 10 pounds) for one week after the procedure.
Meet Our Staff

Our staff are experienced and trustworthy

Azia Clinic abortion clinics offer the highest quality of women's health care. Our staff of by board certified OB/GYN medical doctors, nurses, technicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and nurse anesthetists are committed to confidential and personal care, patient education and excellence in medical practices.

Dr Mark
Chief Operating Officer
Mark has worked in reproductive health since 1982. During high school, he began his career at Azia Clinic in an entry-level position in Port Elizabeth. Within five years, he was the clinic manager. When the organization expanded to Port Elizabeth, he was hand-picked by the administration to transfer to our surgery center. In the years since, Mark has been the driving force behind the operations of starting the Port Elizabeth facilities for Family Planning Associates.

He is actively involved with the Port Elizabeth area community, working with other area abortion providers, academic institutions and legislators to ensure that women in the Port Elizabeth area can more easily obtain and pay for the abortions that they need.

Mark's passion for women's healthcare remains the same after all of these years - helping the women he serves. He still wears scrubs to work and always puts the patients before his primary job in administration. He may be the woman doing the ultrasound, he may go over paper work, or he may be at the front desk. Regardless, he'll never be out of touch with our patients' needs.

Dr Shamim
Associate Medical Director
Khosi Shamim, MD MPH is a graduate of the University of Cape Town of Medicine and completed her residency training in Obstetrics and Gynecology at University of Pretoria.

Shamim is a board certified Obstetrician Gynecologist and a member of the South African Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the National Abortion Federation and the Society of Family Planning.

As the Director of the Center for Reproductive Health at the University of Cape Town at Cape Town, Khosi Shamim oversaw the provision of comprehensive contraception and abortion services. She is active in community wide efforts to enhance access to family planning services for women in underserved populations and to forward a legislative agenda that champions women's reproductive freedom. Her research focuses on abortion in the second trimester, patient knowledge and understanding of restrictive abortion legislation and long acting reversible contraceptive methods.

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