The abortion pill is a medicine that ends a pregnancy. The medical name for the abortion pill is mifepristone. It works by blocking the hormone progesterone. Because without progesterone, the lining of the uterus breaks down and the pregnancy cannot continue.
The abortion pill is followed by another medicine called misoprostol which makes the uterus contract, causing cramping and bleeding similar to a miscarriage.
Mifeprex is a medical alternative to surgical abortion. This medication is used to end an early pregnancy. Mifeprex is a pill that blocks a hormone, progesterone, which is needed for a pregnancy to continue. When followed by another medication, misoprostol, Mifeprex ends early pregnancy. Early pregnancy means it is 63 days (9) weeks or less since your last menstrual period began. Mifeprex is taken orally and allows you to avoid anesthesia or surgery in most cases.
If you choose medical abortion, you must be less than 9 weeks pregnant. You can take control in the privacy of your own home. You will need to bring in a first morning urine sample the day we start the procedure.
How is a medical abortion performed?
At least two separate visits to the clinic are required.
It involves taking medicines to cause an early miscarriage (It can feel like having a heavy and more painful period).
At the first appointment the abortion pill (mifepristone) is swallowed. Mifepristone works by blocking the hormone progesterone. Without progesterone the lining of the uterus breaks down and the pregnancy can’t continue.
At the second appointment misoprostol tablets are inserted into the vagina either by the woman herself or by the healthcare professional. Misoprostol makes the womb contract, causing cramping and bleeding similar to a miscarriage.
The abortion pill can be used up to 23 weeks and 5 days of pregnancy at bpas. What to expect depends on whether the pregnancy is less than or more than 9 weeks.
During and After a Medical Abortion
Some women will have vaginal bleeding after the first drug. This bleeding may be light, or it may be like a heavy period. After taking the misoprostol, cramping and bleeding usually begin within a few hours, although it might take longer. The cramping and bleeding may be more than with a normal menstrual period. Written and verbal guidelines are given to all women to help to know what to expect, and when to call the clinic for further evaluation.
The most common side effects of medical abortion are caused by misoprostol. In addition to cramps and bleeding, early side effects may include: headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, chills, or fatigue. If you experiences the following symptoms, flu-like symptoms or abdominal pain more than 24 hours after using misoprostol, fever (100.4 or higher), or are bleeding heavy (soaking two pads per hour for two consecutive hours) you are advised to call the clinic.
About 95-98% of women will have a successful medical abortion. Complications are rare. However, a small percentage of women (approximately 0.5-2%) will need a suction aspiration because of heavy or prolong bleeding. In about 1% of cases or fewer, the medications do not work and the pregnancy continues. In these cases, a suction procedure (surgical abortion) must be done to empty the uterus and complete the abortion.
Medical Abortion requires a follow-up visit to the clinic. This return visit is very important to be sure that the abortion has been completed.
What will happen if there is a problem with the procedure?
This abortion procedure is 95% effective. The 5% failure rate is generally caused by bleeding or an incomplete procedure. If this does happen, you will need a surgical procedure.