Obtaining the abortion pill by mail might seem like the best way to address an unintended pregnancy. After all, it is easy and private. But it also leaves gaps in care that could endanger your safety.
What Is the Abortion Pill?
The abortion pill, also called a medical abortion, is a series of two drugs, mifepristone and misoprostol, used to terminate a pregnancy.
First, a woman takes mifepristone. This drug blocks the hormone progesterone a woman’s body needs to support the pregnancy. Without progesterone, the pregnancy cannot grow and ends.
Within 48 hours of taking mifepristone, the woman takes misoprostol. This drug causes the uterus to contract to force the pregnancy out of the woman’s body through her vagina.
If you are considering the abortion pill, you must be aware of the risks. Women experience their abortions at home and need to know when to call a medical provider or visit an ER if complications arise.
Risks of the abortion pill include:
- Incomplete abortion, which may need to be followed by surgical abortion
- An ongoing pregnancy if the procedure doesn’t work
- Heavy and prolonged bleeding
- Digestive system discomfort
You should seek immediate medical attention after an abortion if you have signs or symptoms of more serious complications. Indications of a severe complication can include:
- Heavy bleeding — soaking two or more pads an hour for two hours
- Severe abdominal or back pain
- Fever lasting more than 24 hours
- Foul-smelling vaginal discharge
Before an Abortion
Before ordering these drugs, you should obtain a confirmation pregnancy test and a follow-up ultrasound.
Why Do I Need An Ultrasound?
An ultrasound is a simple diagnostic procedure that uses sound waves to view your pregnancy. It will take as little as a half-hour but will provide essential information for your health and safety.
- An ultrasound will verify that your pregnancy is growing. Up to 20% of pregnancies end in natural miscarriages. If you experience a miscarriage, you need a healthcare provider, not an abortion provider.
- An ultrasound will determine how far along your pregnancy is. The FDA has not approved the abortion pill for pregnancies over 10 weeks. For your safety, providers recommend a different abortion procedure.
- An ultrasound can detect if your pregnancy is growing in the uterus. Sometimes a pregnancy can attach to a space outside the uterus. When this happens, it is a life-threatening condition for the woman called an ectopic pregnancy. The abortion pill does not effectively treat ectopic pregnancy.
Want to Find Out More?
For more information on the abortion pill or to obtain free pregnancy testing and ultrasound confirmation, contact us today.