This is a very biased site to reference, but it explains the procedure.
Now as far as saving the mothers life goes, I can explain from recent personal experience how this is handled. I had what was considered a Ã¢â‚¬Å“medically necessary abortionÃ¢â‚¬Â when I had my daughter. I was induced, in labor for over 7 hours, and then brought into the operating room for an emergency C-Section. According to dictionary.com abortion is defined as:
a. Termination of pregnancy and expulsion of an embryo or of a fetus that is incapable of survival.
b. Any of various procedures that result in such termination and expulsion. Also called induced abortion.
2. The premature expulsion of a nonviable fetus from the uterus; a miscarriage.
3. Cessation of normal growth, especially of an organ or other body part, prior to full development or maturation.
4. An aborted organism.
5. Something malformed or incompletely developed; a monstrosity.
The medical staff was calling it a Ã¢â‚¬Å“pregnancy terminationÃ¢â‚¬Â because that is exactly what we were doing. We had to Ã¢â‚¬Å“abortÃ¢â‚¬Â the pregnancy just like a marine Ã¢â‚¬Å“abortsÃ¢â‚¬Â a mission. The real issue becomes the manner in which the fetus is aborted. In my case the abortion began when the induction creme was applied to my cervix. The actual abortion happened when I had the C-Section the moment the doctor removed the baby.
I personally donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t consider what I went through to be an Ã¢â‚¬Å“abortionÃ¢â‚¬Â in the way that most people view it because I delivered a baby. However, a doctor will look at it completely different because we Ã¢â‚¬Å“abortedÃ¢â‚¬Â the pregnancy. I think thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the best way I can describe it without bringing politics into it.