Abortion Information—Pregnant

Abortion Abuse Advice & Information Service

Am I pregnant?

pregnancy teen test1

If you think you may be pregnant, you can call 713.263.8400 for a free pregnancy test or to get answers to questions about pregnancy testing.

If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy it is good to weigh your options and confirm your pregnancy first. The options are to parent, adoption or abortion. You may read in more detail about abortion alternatives, which is to parent or adoption. Be sure to read through the abortion checklist, procedures and risks before making your decision.

Fetal Development

Is It A Baby?

  Mother and Child baby

Years ago, while giving an anesthetic for a ruptured tubal pregnancy (at two months) I was handed what I believed to be the smallest human being ever seen. The embryo sac was intact and transparent. Within the sac was a tiny human male, swimming extremely vigorously in the amnionic fluid, while attached to the wall by the umbilical cord. The tiny human was perfectly developed, with long, tapering fingers, feet and toes. It was almost transparent as regards to the skin, and the delicate arteries and veins were prominent to the ends of the fingers. The baby was extremely alive and did not look at all like the photos and drawings of 'embryos' which I have seen. When the sac was opened, the tiny human immediately lost its life and took on what is accepted as the appearance of an embryo at this stage, blunt extremities, etc.

Paul E. Rockwell, M.D.

*Six Week Ectopic Pregnancy in Amnionic Sac. Photograph by Robert Wolfe, University of Minnesota

Development Cycle

Pregnancy is measured in trimesters from the first day of your last menstrual period, totaling 40 weeks. The first trimester of pregnancy is week 1 through week 12. The second trimester is week 13 to week 27. And the third trimester of pregnancy spans from week 28 to the birth.

  • First Trimester

    Two Weeks
    The sperm and egg join in the fallopian tube to form a unique human being. Forty-six chromosomes combine, which pre-determine all of a person's physical characteristics.

    Three Weeks
    Once in the uterus, the developing embryo, called a blastocyst, searches for a nice place to implant, where it actually burrows beneath the surface of the uterus. The yolk sac, shown on the left, produces blood cells during the early weeks of life. The unborn child is only one-sixth of an inch long, but is rapidly developing. The backbone, spinal column, and nervous system are forming. The kidneys, liver, and intestines are taking shape.

    Four Weeks
    The embryo produces hormones which stop the mother's menstrual cycle. The brain, the heart, and spinal cord begin to form. The stomach and intestines are forming and the bone tissue is growing. The eyes and ears are just beginning to form. The weight is less than one ounce and the length is about one-eighth inch.

    Five Weeks
    The embryo is the size of a raisin. By day twenty-one, the embryo's tiny heart has begun beating. The neural tube enlarges into three parts, soon to become a very complex brain. The placenta begins functioning. The spine and spinal cord grow faster than the rest of the body at this stage and give the appearance of a tail. This disappears as the child continues to grow.

    Six Weeks
    The lungs are beginning to form and brain activity can be recorded. Eyes are present, but no eyelids yet and the hands and feet have fingers and toes, but still may be webbed. The heart is more developed and is beating. Early reflexes are starting to develop.

    Seven Weeks
    Facial features are visible, including a mouth and tongue. The eyes have a retina and lens. The major muscle system is developed, and the unborn child practices moving. The child has its own blood type, distinct from the mother's. These blood cells are produced by the liver now instead of the yolk sac.

    Eight Weeks
    The unborn child, called a fetus at this stage, is about half an inch long. The tiny person is protected by the amnionic sac, filled with fluid. Inside, the child swims and moves gracefully. The arms and legs have lengthened, and fingers can be seen. The toes will develop in the next few days. Brain waves can be measured.

    Ten Weeks
    The heart is almost completely developed and very much resembles that of a newborn baby. An opening in the atrium of the heart and the presence of a bypass valve divert much of the blood away from the lungs, as the child's blood is oxygenated through the placenta. Twenty tiny baby teeth are forming in the gums.

    Twelve Weeks
    Vocal chords are complete, and the child can and does sometimes cry (silently). The brain is fully formed, and the child can feel pain. The fetus may even suck its thumb. The eyelids now cover the eyes, and will remain shut until the seventh month to protect the delicate optical nerve fibers.

  • Second Trimester

    Fourteen Weeks
    The mouth can make sucking motions and amniotic fluid is swallowed. The skin is almost transparent and sweat glands develop. The liver and pancreas are starting to work. The length is about three to four inches.

    Sixteen Weeks
    Movement may be felt by the mother. The head and the body become proportional as the neck takes shape. Swallowing and chest movements are present. The weight is about five ounces and the length is about four to five inches.

    Eighteen Weeks
    The taste buds are present and the unborn child is able to suck its thumb. The fingernails are well formed and the arms and legs can begin to punch and kick. The gender (male or female) is evident. A protective waxy coating is present on the skin (Lanugo). The length is about five to six inches.

    Twenty Weeks
    The skin becomes less transparent as fat begins to deposit. Eyebrows and eyelashes appear. The unborn child is able to turn from side to side and front to back. The unborn child is able to feel pain as stated by some experts. Breathing-like movements become regular and are detected by ultrasound. The length is about six to seven inches.

    Twenty–Two Weeks
    The eyes are fully functional and capable of movement. The vocal cords are active and reflexes are present. Rapid brain growth continues and the unborn child weighs about one pound and is about seven to eight inches in length.

    Twenty–Four Weeks
    Unique footprints and fingerprints are present and outside sounds can be heard. The baby can have hiccups, squint eyes, smile and frown and all may be seen by an ultrasound. The lungs have developed and babies born prematurely may survive. The unborn child weighs about one to one and half pounds and is about eight to nine inches in length.

    Twenty–Six Weeks
    The eyelids open and close and can perceive light. The central nervous system is developed enough to control some body functions. The lungs have matured a little more and breathing is possible. The baby is able to exercise muscles a little more by kicking and stretching. The weight is about one and a half pounds to two pounds and the length is about nine to ten inches.

  • Third Trimester

    Twenty–Eight Weeks
    There is a good chance of survival if baby is born at this time. The unborn child's brain wave patterns resemble that of a full term baby. Another person can hear the heartbeat by listening to the pregnant woman's abdomen. The weight is about two to two and half pounds and the length is about ten to thirteen inches.

    Thirty Weeks
    The central nervous system has increased control over body functions and rhythmic breathing movements occur. The bones are fully developed, but they are still soft and pliable. The unborn child weighs about two and half to three pounds and the length is about fifteen to sixteen inches. The lungs are not fully mature.

    Thirty–Two Weeks
    Connections between nerve cells in the brain are increasing and the lungs are still maturing. The skin is becoming thicker with more color and the body temperature is partially under control. There is a good chance of long-term survival and the risk of long-term disability is low. The baby weighs about three to three and half pounds and is about sixteen to seventeen inches in length.

    Thirty–Four Weeks
    The unborn child has sleep patterns and can open its eyes for alert times and close them for sleeping. The ears have begun to hold their shape and lung development is maturing even more. The baby weighs about four to four and half pounds and is about seventeen to eighteen inches in length.

    Thirty–Six Weeks
    The eyes are fully functional and capable of movement. The vocal cords are active and reflexes are present. Rapid brain growth continues and the unborn child weighs about one pound and is about seven to eight inches in length.

    Twenty–Four Weeks
    Body fat has increased and fingernails reach the end of the fingertips. Fine hair begins to disappear. The unborn child weighs about five to six pounds and is about sixteen to nineteen inches in length.

    Thirty–Eight Weeks
    The fingernails extend beyond the fingertips and the child can firmly grasp with its fingers and hands. Small breast buds are present in both sexes. The child can turn towards a light source and is now considered full term if he/she were born. The average weight is greater than six pounds and the length is about nineteen to twenty-one inches.

  • Abortion Alternatives

    Explore all of your options for handling an unplanned pregnancy. There is help available if you find yourself in an unplanned pregnancy situation.

      Points To Consider When Making Your Decision:

    • Have the courage to explore all pregnancy options
    • Quick and hasty decisions, based on fear have dire consequences which many women regret later in life
    • Take time to get the all facts
    • Mother and Child
    • Abortion Alternatives

    *Some resources and pictures from Texas Department of Health booklet:  A Woman's Right To Know
    All information and sources are for informational purposes only, Foundation For Life not affliated with the Texas Department of Health.

    Teen Pregnancy

    pregnancy teen test1 If you are teenager and are in an unplanned pregnancy, you are most likey going through many emotions and have many questions. You may have told someone already and got their opinion on the situation, but it may not be one to what you are feeling good about. It is important to take your time to sort through your feelings, maybe even speak with someone who will not profit from your decision or pressure you into doing something that you may later regret. You may or may not have the support from the father of the baby and not know what to do. You may be afraid to tell your parents about the situation and afraid of their response. You might feel powerless and feel you have no rights in this situation. It is important to know that there is real help available and a listening ear.

    • Gather the facts before making a decision
    • Know all your options for the pregnancy before making a decision
    • Tell someone who is objective and will NOT profit from your decision
    • Do not base your decision on fear
    • Know that your decision is for a lifetime
    • Tell Your Parents

    pregnancy teen test2

    Trends in teen pregnancy in the United States

    • About 750,000 teens become pregnant each year
    • Almost one-third of teen girls will become pregnant
    • Among industrial or developed nations, the United States has the highest rate of teen pregnancy, teen parenthood, and teen abortions
    • About half of U.S. teens are sexually active. Of those who are sexually active, more are having sex at a younger age, which increases the risk of teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted disease
    • More teens are waiting until they are older or until they are married to have sex
    • More than half of teen pregnancies occur in older teens, age 18 or 19. The number of younger teens having babies is declining more than that of older teens
    • About a quarter of teen mothers have a second baby within two years of the first

    Know Your Rights

    If you are seeking a legal abortion, you should know your rights before making your decision. Abortion injuries can be FATAL and you should protect yourself and your legal rights.

    YOU HAVE THE RIGHT

    • You Have The RIGHT to insist that your abortion is performed ONLY by a licensed physician
    • You Have The RIGHT to know if this physician's license has ever been suspended or revoked
    • You Have The RIGHT to know if this physician has a history of malpractice. For a list of lawsuits against abortion doctors in Harris County 713.263.8400
    • You Have The RIGHT to be told whether this physician has medical malpractice insurance in case you are injured or killed during the procedure. At the present time, Texas DOES NOT have a law that requires physicians to carry malpractice insurance

    DO NOT give away your legal rights. Do not sign a statement that you will not hold the clinic or doctor liable if you are injured or killed during the abortion. No competent attorney would advise you to sign such a statement

    Regardless of your age, marital status or any other factor, no one has the legal right to force you to have an abortion.

    If someone is trying to force you into this decision against your will, contact 713.263.8400 for Houston, Texas area or call 1.800.401.6494

    TEXAS LAW

    • Texas Law requires a doctor to notify a parent of a patient who is less than 18 years of age (a minor) before the minor can have an abortion unless the court grants a waiver
    • Things your doctor should talk to you about prior to abortion:
      • How long you've been pregnant
      • The medical risks of having an abortion
      • The medical risks of continuing your pregnancy
    • Visit Texas Department of Health website to read more or download a copy of the A Woman's Right To Know
      Woman's Right To Know booklet and the Woman's Right To Know Resource Directory Texas Department of Health website is secure. No information will be collected or record any information about you