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How Does the Abortion Pill Work?

If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy and considering your options, you may be wondering if the abortion pill is for you.

For the sake of protecting your health, it’s crucial to understand how the abortion pill works, what potential risks there are, as well as the limitations of the procedure.

How the Abortion Pill Works

The abortion pill, also called a medical abortion, is a regimen of two drugs.

Mifepristone is the first drug used; it blocks progesterone. The second drug, called misoprostol, is then used to force your uterus to contract and expel the pregnancy from your body.

There are side effects to a medical abortion that you may experience, including:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Headache

Risks to Medical Abortion

Just like any other medical procedure, there are risks associated with the abortion pill. According to the Mayo Clinic, these risks include:

  • Infection
  • Heavy and prolonged bleeding
  • Fever
  • Digestive system discomfort
  • An ongoing pregnancy (if the medical abortion does not work)

It is important to be aware of these risks and to have follow-up care available in the event complications arise after a medical abortion.

Limitations to the Abortion Pill

The abortion pill is only recommended to be used in the first 10 weeks of pregnancy. Attempting a medical abortion after 10 weeks can lead to serious health complications, including an incomplete abortion.

As a result of this, your medical provider will usually recommend an ultrasound scan to confirm the age of your pregnancy and that you are eligible for the abortion pill.

Other pre-existing conditions can also make you ineligible for a medical abortion, including:

  • Have an intrauterine device (IUD)
  • Take a blood thinner or certain steroid medications
  • Have an allergy to the medicine used
  • Have an ectopic pregnancy (pregnancy outside the uterus)
  • Have certain medical conditions
  • Can’t make follow-up visits to your provider or can’t access emergency care

Talking with your medical provider is an important step to ensure you are not putting your health at risk before attempting a medical abortion.

Where to Find Answers

Palm Beach Women’s Clinic offers no-cost pregnancy testing and follow-up ultrasound scans to provide you with valuable information about your pregnancy, including the age of your pregnancy.

Our trained and caring team will also answer all your questions and explain all the options available to you.

Contact us today to schedule your no-cost and confidential appointment and get the answers you need to make the best decision for your health and future.

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