why it matters
More than a dozen states outlawed abortion last year, prompting more women with unwanted pregnancies to seek self-administered medical abortions.
However, the difficulty and time-consuming process required to procure the medicines causes delays, often leading to further pregnancy by the time the medicines arrive. The new study, one of the first to report on self-administered medical abortions after the first trimester of pregnancy, offers some reassurance to these women, the researchers said. rice field.
“This paper demonstrates that medical self-administered abortion is safe and effective, including after 12 weeks’ gestation,” said Daniel Grossman, Ph.D., professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences at the University of California, Sun. It is an addition to our research.” Francisco. “As state-level bans make in-clinic abortion care unavailable in many parts of the country, self-administered abortions will become more common, as we are already seeing.”
The study also suggests an alternative to medical abortion if access to mifepristone is severely limited. In April, the Supreme Court stayed a lower court ruling blocking the distribution and sale of mifepristone across the United States while the case moved through the judicial system.
About 44 percent of the participants in the new study were using misoprostol alone. Misoprostol is prescribed for many conditions and is available over-the-counter in many countries.
About 90 percent of the women in the study successfully completed their pregnancies with self-administered medical abortion without the need for additional intervention. 5% underwent procedures to complete the abortion and 5% had an incomplete abortion.
The dual therapy of mifepristone and misoprostol is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use up to 10 weeks of pregnancy under the supervision of a healthcare provider.
However, given the shortage of health care providers in many developing countries, the WHO supports self-administered medical abortion without medical supervision up to 12 weeks’ gestation.
The new report is a partial analysis of a large study of 1,352 women who self-administered abortions at various stages of pregnancy, with relatively few women having advanced pregnancies.
Only three participants self-administered an abortion at least 17 weeks’ gestation, and the study authors called for further research on medical abortion and subsequent pregnancies.
Obtaining these abortion drugs, often ordered by mail, continues to fuel the ongoing abortion debate in the United States.