Medication Abortion with Misoprostol Only
Falls Church Healthcare Center is aware of the recent ruling which was decided in Alliance for Hippocratic Medicine v. FDA in March 2023 — a lawsuit which challenged the FDA’s decades-old approval of Mifepristone, one of the two medications typically used to provide medication abortion care. The lawsuit’s purpose was to revoke the FDA’s approval
of Mifepristone in an attempt to effectively ban medication abortion nationwide.
It is important to remember that Mifepristone is a very safe medication — one which has been used very safely for over two decades. This politically-charged legal decision does not change this fact. However, this decision has created a barrier for patients to access Mifepristone . Many different groups are challenging this decision and working hard to reinstate the original FDA decision to approve Mifepristone for use.
In the meantime, FCHC will be using a Misoprostol-only medication abortion regimen. Misoprostol is also a very safe medication, and Misoprostol-only abortion has been used successfully for many years as well. Studies of self-managed use of Misoprostol-only regimens have found high levels of effectiveness, with 93-99% of participants reporting complete abortions without the need for surgical intervention.
A medication abortion (also known as the “abortion pill”) is a safe and effective method for an abortion through 11 weeks.
At Falls Church Healthcare we are currently using the medication Μisоpгostоl as a means for patients to end their pregnancies.
You will have an opportunity to meet with your patient educator to discuss the procedure and your feelings and concerns prior to this appointment. Our staff is here to support and help both patients and those who are with you in this experience.
Completing the medication abortion procedure itself only takes 5-10 minutes. However, you should expect to be in our center for your appointments for 1.5 to 2 hours — which includes registration, paperwork, lab services, procedure review and your actual abortion care appointment.
What to Expect:
- At your abortion care appointment, you will undergo an ultrasound in order for our clinician to locate and measure your pregnancy. The clinician will meet with you and review your health history and answer any questions you may have about medication abortion.
- Our clinician will provide you with Μisоpгostоl, a medication which you will take at home, as well as specific instructions on how to proceed with this medication. It softens the cervix, and uterine cramping and bleeding (like during your period) begins to expel the pregnancy. Cramping and bleeding may be moderate to heavy. Our clinician may also prescribe medication for pain and nausea relief to counteract the symptoms of the Misoprostol.
At Home: You will take the Μisоpгostоl tablets as directed, helping the uterus to contract and empty. After you take the Μisоpгostоl you will have bleeding and strong cramping that may be severe, dramatic or simply similar to one of your “bad” periods. This usually occurs within seven hours of taking the Misprostol and may last a few hours.
- A heating pad can help with the cramps.
- You may experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, chills, or feel tired. These symptoms usually last only a short time and stop on their own. Everyone’s experience and comfort levels will be different.
- You may be given a prescription by your physician for pain management to be filled at your pharmacy.
After two (2) weeks you will complete your follow-up wellness report: either online, by phone or in person. After four (4) weeks you will take a urine hCG hormone test which will be provided to you.
There are options for your follow-up assessment to verify you have successfully expelled your pregnancy tissue completely which we can review with you.
Additional Information on Abortion Pill (Medication Abortion):
- National Abortion Federation: I’m Pregnant: What are the options?
- National Abortion Federation: First Trimester Abortion: A Comparison of Procedures
- How to use Misoprostol for abortion | Ami Explains Abortion (YouTube video)