Medication Abortion (Abortion Pill)
A medical abortion is brought about by taking medications that will end a pregnancy up to 10 weeks. A medical abortion is done without instruments entering the uterus, therefore, it can be a safe alternative to surgical abortion. A combination of medications is used to end the pregnancy. A medical abortion is 95-98% effective. The process completes in a day or two for over 90% of women.
Mifepristone is the first medication and taken in the form of a pill. It works by blocking the hormone progesterone, which is necessary to sustain pregnancy. Without this hormone, the lining of the uterus breaks down, the cervix (opening of the uterus or womb) softens, and bleeding begins. This medication is generally available to physicians like us who provide abortion services.
Misoprostol, a second medication, also in the form of a pill, is inserted into the vagina or taken by mouth, usually the next day. Misoprostol causes the uterus to contract and empty. This ends the pregnancy. To confirm completion, a follow-up appointment is scheduled. You should not have a medical abortion if you:
- Have adrenal disease or severe liver, kidney, or pulmonary disease.
- Use corticosteroids.
- Have cardiovascular disease.
- Have inflammatory bowel disease.
- Have abnormal blood profile and/or severe anemia.
- Have an ectopic pregnancy.
- Are breastfeeding.
- Have folate deficiency.
- Have known intolerance to either methotrexate or misoprostol.
- Cannot commit to returning to clinic for all recommended follow-up visits.
- Are unwilling to have a surgical abortion even if the provider advises you to.
- Have no telephone.
- Have no transportation.
- Live more than two (2) hours away from emergency medical care.
- Have contraindications determined by your provider.
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