The abortion pill, also known as medication or medical abortion, refers to 2 separate tablets taken in continuity. The first pill (mifepristone) is taken at the health facility and then the second one (4 capsules) known as misoprostol, is taken after 24 hrs. (Earliest) and up to 72 hrs. ( latest), at home.
The type of pregnancy termination method you opt for depends mostly on what makes you comfortable. With the pill, many women fancy the concept that they do not need to complete the procedure in a health facility. You are free to decide where you want to have an abortion from. It can be at home or in any other place you choose.
Similarly, you can decide if you want to be with somebody or alone during the process. Also, because a medical abortion is designed to be like a miscarriage and is less invasive.
Who can go for medical abortion?
If you are less than ten weeks into the pregnancy, you can take the pill. However, if you are more than ten weeks gone, the pill may be less safe and effective. As such, it is highly recommended that you go for an in-clinic abortion. Similarly, if you have any pre-existing conditions like high blood pressure, hypertension or any cardiovascular diseases, the abortion pill may not be suitable for you. You also cannot go for the pill if:
· You are not willing to have an in-clinic abortion if the pill doesn’t work.
· You have a mass on your ovaries or ectopic pregnancy.
· You are on long term corticosteroids.
· Specific genetic diseases
· You have liver, kidney or heart problems.
· You have bleeding disorders.
How does abortion pill work?
As mentioned earlier, the abortion pill refers to taking two types of medications to terminate a pregnancy. Now, for the baby to grow, they need a hormone known as progesterone. The first pill Mifepristone is used to block the body from producing progesterone, hence stopping the foetus from growing.
The second pill Misoprostol taken a few hours’ later causes bleeding and cramping to empty the uterus. The nurse or doctor will give you instructions about where, how and when to take the pills.
The medic may also prescribe some antibiotics to counter infections. The second medicine makes you feel like you are having a painful campy period: Note, if you do not experience any bleeding or cramping within 24 hours after taking the second pill, call your doctor or nurse immediately.
How effective is the abortion pill?
While the two pills are very effective, how they work on your body will depend on how far you are into the pregnancy. It works about 96-99 out of 100 times for people who are eight weeks or less. For those who are 9-10 weeks, it is effective 93 out of 100 times.
However, if you take another dose, it works 99/100 times. The far you are into the pregnancy, the less effective the drug is. It doesn’t work ultimately, you can go for an in-clinic abortion at a reliable health facility with years of experience to complete the termination.
When can I take the abortion pill?
You can take medication abortion up to 11 weeks after your last period. If it is 12 weeks or more, an in-clinic abortion will be more appropriate to terminate the pregnancy.
What happens after medication abortion?
Some people experience some vaginal bleeding after taking the first drug, but it is very rare. The second pill causes bleeding and cramping from your vagina as the pregnancy leaves the uterus. This happens after an hour or so.
You may feel nauseated, chills, mild flu or have diarrhoea plus the bleeding as your system pushes the foetus out of the uterus. Heavy bleeding usually stops after the pregnancy is out, typically within 3 to 5 hours.
You should have some thick maxi pads as well as heating pads to help with the cramping. Moreover, it is critical to plan for light vaginal bleeding to continue after any kind of abortion. Some people continue to bleed until after the next period, which is within 3 to 6 weeks.
What happens after the abortion?
Most people feel crampy and tired for a day or more. Sporting and bleeding too may continue for a few weeks. But most women go back to their daily activities after 24 hours.
Now, how somebody feels during and after the process, varies from one person to another. However, when you take medicine, plan to rest and to be comfortable. You will probably feel tired for a day or 2, but you should be back to normal activities soon.
You can also go back to your daily activities like driving, school or work the next day if you feel okay. But do not engage in heavy exercises or do hard work for a couple of days.
You will feel better and stronger with time. Call your health facility or doctor if you still feel weak after a day or two; these may be a sign of infection. Tender breasts with a milky discharge are also common after an abortion. That should fade within 72 hours.
People also have a wide array of mixed emotions after the procedure. Some feel relieved while some feel regretful and sad. This is completely normal. If your emotions hinder you from doing the normal things you used to do. Call your nurse or doctor for a non-judgmental and confidential emotional support. That said, you must go for a follow-up visit to ensure that the process is complete, your uterus is empty and you are healthy!
What can I do to ease the pain?
To help you minimize pain and be more comfortable during the process, you can:
Â· Take pain killers like Motrin or Advil. Avoid aspirin; it can worsen your bleeding.
Â· Put a hot water bottle or heating pad on the belly for a few minutes.
Â· Take a cold shower
Â· Have somebody rub your back and belly
Â· Sit in the toilet
How much does the abortion pill cost?
The abortion pill costs around $450-600 depending on your location. There are also some facilities where medical abortion costs between $300 and $800. Again it all boils down to your state, health insurance as well as provider.
Will the abortion medication affect my periods?
It is normal to spot off or on and bleed for a couple of weeks after the abortion pill. To counter this, you can use menstrual cups, tampons, pads or anything that makes you comfortable.
Nonetheless, most doctors and nurses recommend using pads for several days after the procedure to allow you to monitor how you are bleeding. But keep in mind that abortion normally starts another menstrual process. This means your period will be affected, but it will go back to normal with eight weeks after the abortion.
When can I start having sex after the abortion?
As soon as you feel better and ready!
Will it be okay if I start using birth control?
It is okay to start using safe birth control methods immediately after having the abortion. Biologically, you can get another pregnancy very quickly and easily after a medical abortion, so it is always a brilliant idea to discuss with your doctor or nurse about birth control ASAP. They will direct you towards a suitable option.
Potential Complications and Risks
While medical/ abortion pills are generally safe, there are chances that you can experience complications from medicine. Though rare potential complications and risks include:
Â· A failed or incomplete abortion. This is where the tissues of the foetus remain in the uterus. This can cause infections.
Â· An undiscovered ectopic pregnancy. This is a serious medical emergency.
Â· Heavy flooding
Â· Blood clots in the uterus
Emergency Symptoms of the complications above include:
Â· Severe pain
Â· Bleeding excessively (bleeding through 2 or more pads within one hour)
Â· Passing clots for an hour or more that are bigger than a lemon’s size
Â· Smelling vaginal discharge
Choosing the right procedure for your needs
Just like deciding to end your pregnancy, determining the right termination method is person resolution that mainly depends on your needs and circumstances. One of the main determinants is how far you are into the pregnancy. If it is less than eight weeks, you can go for medical abortion or an in-clinic procedure. However, if you are 10-12 weeks far, surgical abortion is your best bet. Those who are between five and nine weeks gone have the flexibility and can go for both surgical and medical abortion.
That notwithstanding it all boils down to your preferences. There are some women who prefer to abort in the comfort and privacy of their homes while some prefer having an experienced medic by their side during the termination hence opting for an in-clinic procedure.
Regardless of which procedure you choose, our able doctors and nurses are here to guide and support you. Our committed team of medical professionals at the Women Centre in Orlando and other facilities can help you decide if the termination is right for you and, if so, help you select the right termination procedure. Contact us now to schedule an appointment and explore your options.