If you want to end a pregnancy, you may be able to have a medical abortion . This type of abortion, which entails the use of medications, is often an option for women who have not yet passed their ninth week of pregnancy. If you are early enough in your pregnancy and you would prefer taking medications to undergoing a surgical procedure, your gynecologist may prescribe one or more of the following medications to induce an abortion.
To sustain a pregnancy, the placenta must provide nutrients to the growing embryo. An increase in the production of progesterone allows the placenta to thicken throughout the pregnancy so that it can fulfill this function. If the placenta does not grow, the pregnancy may end. The drug mifepristone can obstruct production of progesterone and the ability of the placenta to grow during a pregnancy, thereby facilitating the end of the pregnancy . You may know mifepristone as the drug RU-486.
Methotrexate is a drug that works in much the same way as mifepristone. If you would like to end a pregnancy, a gynecologist can prescribe methotrexate to accomplish this. While this drug can be effective at prohibiting the placenta from thickening during pregnancy, it may require more time than mifepristone to complete this step of a medical abortion.
The reason why many gynecologists prescribe several medications to induce abortion is because they can more successfully accomplish this task than when any one drug is used by itself. In addition to prescribing either mifepristone or methotrexate, an abortion doctor may also give you the drug misoprostol. This medication induces contractions, which is necessary so that the tissues of the uterus and placenta can pass out of your body.
Do you have more questions about medical abortions? If so, call Washington Surgi-Clinic at (202) 659-9403 to set up a consultation. Our women’s clinic offers both medical and surgical abortion services to residents in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C.