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Know about Types of abortion – abortion pill & in-clinic abortion

Philip Smith August 21, 2021

Self-administered vs In-clinic Medical Abortion

Abortion that does not use surgical methods, but rather relies on medication to terminate a pregnancy is known as a medical abortion. It is effective during the first trimester of pregnancy and is generally safe and effective. Medical abortion can be done at a clinic or at home by using easily accessible medications such as an MTP Kit.

Deciding to have your abortion at home can be a difficult choice to make. Abortion can create emotional hardships that are often difficult to navigate through alone. Having an abortion at home is a responsibility that must be handled with caution. The person undergoin a medical abortion must also be aware of the possible side effects of abortion, as well as the risks and complications.

Self-administered abortion

Self-administered abortions are performed by the pregnant woman herself or with assistance from others who are not healthcare professionals. A self-administered abortion uses legal or over-the-counter medication, but also includes other methods which are likely to be dangerous. These practices are inadvisable as they can cause severe harm. Self-administered abortions should thus ideally make use of medications meant to induce an abortion. 

Self-managed abortions are performed during the first trimester of pregnancy (first eight weeks). Introduction=ion of self-administered medical abortions has greatly reduced the maternal death rate and injuries resulting from abortion. The increase in availability of misoprostol, or medications such as Cytotec 200 mcg, has led to increased accessibility of safe medical abortions. The medicine is affordable, and can be used in various other treatments. The use of mifepristone and misoprostol has been approved by the WHO for inducing abortionin during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. 

In-clinic medical abortion

In-clinic abortion procedures can be of varying types, and a healthcare professional will determine which method is the best for you. In-clinic abortion makes use of suction to remove the fetus through your uterus. The method used depends on how far into the pregnancy the patient is. Suction abortion remains one of the most common form of abortion in a clinic as it can be used for up to 14-16 weeks after your period stops. D&E or Dilation and Evacuation is another in-clinic abortion procedure. 

Why do some people prefer in-clinic medical abortions? It depends upon individual preferences. Most patients prefer in-clinic abortions due to the presence of trained healthcare professionals such as doctors and nurses. To some people, the procedure may seem much less daunting in the presence of healthcare professionals. Having a nurse or doctor nearby for consultation whenever necessary is also reassuring. In general, a medical abortion takes about 24 hours to be complete. 

How effective are self-administered and in-clinic abortions?

In-clinic abortions are also effective as research shows that they are successful 99% of the time. A repeat procedure is rarely necessary in such cases as success is nearly guaranteed. As long as WHO recommended methods are used, abortions induced by trained professionals are almost always safe.

The success rate of self-induced medical abortion is slightly more difficult to measure. Unsafe abortion procedures are no longer widely used, and it is estimated that one in every ten abortions is self-induced. The effectiveness and availability of both misoprostol and mifepristone is the reason behind these developments. Misoprostol alone is around 83% effective in terminating a pregnancy. The efficiency increases when combined with mifepristone. 

It was reported that the rate of self-induced medical abortion has been increasing due to conservation policing that may make it difficult to access clinics. Online availability of abortion pills has also made these medications increasingly more available, leading to a rise in mail-order drugs. 

Procedural differences

RU-486 (Mifepristone) is used commonly in the United States and Canada. Methotrexate is another medicine that is used for abortions as well as for treating other conditions. Mifepristone, however, is more widely available in North America. It is also affordable, and is the preferred medication in most cases. Mifepristone is administered first followed by misoprostol. Abortion pills can be injected or administered orally.

Mifepristone is used to block progesterone, a hormone that is produced during pregnancy. Blocking this hormone breaks down the lining of the uterus. The embryo is unable to grow. Misoprostol is responsible for discharging the fetus from the body. It makes the uterus contract, resulting in cramps and even bleeding. It is similar to how a miscarriage takes place.

Depending on where you live, you can get an in-clinic abortion before or after your periods stop. In certain cases you can set up an appointment as soon as you get a positive result on your pregnancy test. Some doctors may suggest you wait for five or six weeks after your last period before performing the procedure. State laws will also determine how late you can get an abortion. The difficulty of getting an abortion increases significantly after the 12th week of pregnancy. 

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