VEMA trial

Research status


Overview of Study

Family Planning NSW is participating in the international trial 'Efficacy of Very Early Medical Abortion (VEMA) - a randomised controlled non-inferiority trial'.

The study aims to compare the effectiveness and experience of medical abortion when it is done very early compared to when a woman waits until a pregnancy can be seen inside the uterus (womb) with ultrasound. We are looking to investigate the effectiveness of the earlier treatment by studying any differences in the number of visits/telephone calls made by women, complications and side effects, bleeding patterns and pain between the different treatment options.

Women attending Family Planning NSW (FPNSW), who are very early in their pregnancy and are considering early medical abortion, are being invited to take part. We will need to confirm you don't have a pregnancy yet visible on an ultrasound scan to recruit you into the study.

If you take part, you will be randomised to one of the two study arms:

  • Group 1 - experimental / intervention arm: Medical abortion treatment begins immediately, before a pregnancy is visible inside the uterus with an ultrasound.
  • Group 2 - control arm: Treatment is delayed for 1-2 weeks until pregnancy is visible inside the uterus with an ultrasound scan. This is currently standard practice at FPNSW.

This study is completely voluntary; it is up to you to decide whether or not to take part. If you choose to participate, you are free to withdraw at any time and without giving a reason, and withdrawing will not affect the standard of healthcare that you receive.

This study has been reviewed and approved by the Family Planning NSW Ethics Committee (#R2020-05).


Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden

Contact Details

If you think this may be of interest to you or you would like more information about the study, please contact the Research Centre via email:

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