Medical abortion side effects- What to expect

 Medical abortion side effects- What to expect

A medical abortion is one that is carried out with the assistance of a number of medications administered orally or vaginally. It halts the pregnancy's development and triggers the shedding of the uterine lining. This kind of abortion is possible from the moment pregnancy begins until around nine weeks have passed.

Medication (prescription drugs) is used during a medical abortion, also known as a medication abortion to terminate the pregnancy. Through the ninth week of pregnancy, it is carried out without surgery. It entails the use of the drugs misoprostol and mifepristone. Progesterone is blocked by mifepristone, which is how it functions. The pregnancy cannot progress in the uterus without progesterone. Misoprostol results in bleeding and cramps to empty the uterus.

Surgery or anesthesia is not necessary for a medical abortion. It might begin at a doctor's office or home, followed by follow-up appointments with your healthcare practitioner. During the first trimester of pregnancy, it is the safest and most efficient.

Medical abortion is a significant decision that has emotional and psychological repercussions. Make sure you are aware of the procedure's requirements, potential dangers, side effects, problems, and alternatives if you are thinking about having it done.

They are performed for a variety of very personal reasons. To stop an unplanned pregnancy or finish an early miscarriage, you can select a medical abortion. If you have a health condition that renders keeping a pregnancy life-threatening, you can also choose medical abortion.

When you should not consider medical abortion?

 Medical abortion is not an option in certain conditions. They are: 

Past due with your pregnancy. If your pregnancy has lasted more than nine weeks, you shouldn't try to get an abortion using medicine (after the start of your last period). After seven weeks of pregnancy, several medical abortion procedures cannot be performed.

IUD is presently implanted.

Having a possible extrauterine pregnancy. Ectopic pregnancy is the term used for this.

Have certain health issues. These include conditions that cause bleeding, certain conditions of the heart or blood vessels, severe liver, renal, or lung illness, or uncontrolled seizure disorders.

Use some steroid medications or blood thinners.

Lack of access to emergency treatment or inability to visit your provider for follow-up appointments.

A reaction to the medication being used.

If a medication abortion is not an option for you, you may be able to undergo a surgical operation called a dilation and curettage (D&C).

Types of abortions

Abortions can be performed medically or surgically. The following are some distinctions among the various abortion procedures:

Nine weeks or fewer of pregnancy, medical abortions: Two distinct medications will be taken by a woman, often within 48 hours. A healthcare professional prescribes the drug, which may be consumed at the doctor's office, at home, or a mix of the two. You will get detailed instructions from your healthcare professional on how and when to take the pills.

Abortions performed surgically: In this kind of abortion, the embryo is surgically removed from the uterus. For these forms of abortions, light sedation, local anesthetic, or general anesthetic are necessary (fully asleep). In-clinic abortions, aspiration abortions, and dilatation and curettage (D&C) abortions are a few other names for surgical abortions. Personal preference, being too far along in the pregnancy, or a failed medical abortion are a few reasons why women choose to have an abortion surgically.

Advantages of medical abortion

Medical abortion has the following advantages:

As soon as you discover that you are pregnant, you can obtain one.

There is no anesthetic or surgery involved.

Once the cramps and bleeding start, you can be at home.

Maybe it will seem more normal.

A system of support is something you can have.

Disadvantages of medical abortion

The following are the drawbacks of medical abortion:

The bleeding might be severe and unpleasant for a few days.

Cannot be done nine weeks into pregnancy.

Instead of just a few hours, the procedure takes days.

Risk factors

The following are possible hazards of medical abortion:

Incomplete abortion, which may require a surgical abortion to be performed after.

An ongoing pregnancy if the treatment is unsuccessful.

Protracted and heavy bleeding.



Gastrointestinal discomfort

After using a medication meant to induce an abortion, you may elect to carry the pregnancy to term, but this decision carries the risk of serious problems.

There is no evidence that medical abortion affects subsequent pregnancies until problems arise.

How to prepare for medical abortion?

  • Before performing a medical abortion, your doctor will probably:
  • Analyze your medical background and general health.
  • Examine yourself physically to verify your pregnancy.

To determine the pregnancy's age and confirm that it isn't an ectopic pregnancy or a tumor that has grown inside the uterus, do an ultrasound examination (molar pregnancy).

Take blood and urine samples for tests.

Explanation of the steps involved, side effects, and potential dangers and difficulties.

It might not be simple to decide to get an abortion. As you consider your alternatives, think about getting assistance from your spouse, a member of your family, or a friend. To receive answers to your questions, to help you assess your options, and to think about the potential effects of the treatment in the future, speak with your healthcare practitioner.

An elective abortion is not something that must be done by a medical professional. An elective abortion might not be legal everywhere or there can be legal criteria and waiting periods to adhere to before getting an abortion on demand. There aren't any particular legal criteria or waiting periods if you're getting an abortion for a miscarriage.

What happens during a medical abortion?

Medication must be taken orally or vaginally for a medical abortion. Both anesthesia and surgery are not necessary. It functions by combining two medications that, when taken together, cause an abortion. By preventing progesterone, mifepristone functions. The uterine lining will weaken without progesterone, and the embryo won't remain connected. Misoprostol causes the uterus to constrict, hemorrhage, and evacuate the embryo when administered.

The most typical medical abortions are:

  • Oral misoprostol and mifepristone: Mifepristone can be taken at home or in the presence of your doctor. Misoprostol will then be administered to you at home 24 to 48 hours later.
  • Although misoprostol is delivered vaginally, buccally, or sublingually,  misoprostol (vaginal, buccal, or sublingual) and mifepristone (oral) are the same medication.
  • Additionally, it is given between 24 and 48 hours after the initial medicine.

After taking the second tablet, the worst adverse effects of a medical abortion begin to manifest. You could expect the following in the administration of both medication dosages:

  • Between one and four hours after consuming the second dose, bleeding and cramps begin.
  • Blood clots and significant bleeding continued for several hours.
  • Hours-long, severe cramps.
  • A day or so after taking the second dose, a little temperature or chills. Others report having nausea, dizziness, and diarrhea.
  • A second consultation will be scheduled in order to make sure there were no problems. Despite the rarity of infection following a medical abortion, certain medical professionals may prescribe antibiotics.

After the medical abortion

Following a medical abortion, there may be certain signs and symptoms that need medical treatment.

  • Two hours of heavy bleeding, soaking two or more pads every hour.
  • Severe back or abdominal ache.
  • Greater than 24 hours duration of a fever.
  • Discharge from the cervix that smells bad.

Your doctor will need to see you again soon after a medical abortion to check on your recovery, your uterus size, your bleeding, and any symptoms of infection. Do not insert anything into your vagina for two weeks following the abortion to lower the chance of infection.

Your doctor could inquire about whether you still feel pregnant, whether you observed the gestational sac or embryo emerge, how much bleeding you experienced, and whether it is still happening. You could require an ultrasound and potentially a surgical abortion if your doctor detects an incomplete abortion or a continued pregnancy.

You could have a range of feelings following a medical abortion, such as relief, grief, sadness, or guilt. It could be beneficial to discuss these sentiments with a counselor if they upset you.

You should work closely with your doctor during the whole medical abortion process. Make sure you are familiar with the process and what to expect and discuss any concerns you may have.

Get in touch with your doctor if any of the following later happen:

  • A pair of thick pads were soaked in more than an hour's worth of severe bleeding.
  • more than 24-hour-long fever
  • discharge from the cervix that smells bad.
  • severe back or abdominal ache.
  • After two months, you don't start getting your period.
  • Pregnancy symptoms are present in you.

Abortions performed medically or surgically are quite safe, but you should be aware of certain potential side effects and extremely uncommon problems. Most people will suffer more intense and protracted bleeding and cramps than they do during their periods. Painkillers that are available over-the-counter or on prescription, together with natural therapies like heating pads, can help you manage these symptoms. Other symptoms including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and breast soreness might also occur in some persons. It's a good idea to emphasize self-care and take a few days off from work or school to rest. Within two weeks following your abortion, you can resume the majority of your daily activities, including penetrating intercourse and using tampons. The majority of birth control methods can be started on the same day as your abortion.

Even if you are certain that you made the correct decision, it might be beneficial to have a support network to draw on as it is common to feel very emotional after having an abortion.

Everyone's abortion recovery will ultimately be a little bit unique. After the operation, be sure to pay close attention to how your body and mind feel. If you have any concerns about any of your symptoms, don't be afraid to ask for assistance.

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