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RU486 is Mifepristone, The Abortion Pill

RU-486 is the generic name of mifepristone in the U.S., and is sometimes referred to as non-surgical abortion, medical abortion, or RU486. Non-surgical abortions using RU486 are performed in the first 63 days of the first trimester. Non-surgical abortion is usually in pill form (Mifepristone or RU486), and sometimes by injection or in liquid form (methotrexate). If you call a clinic seeking a non-surgical abortion, make sure you know which version you will be receiving. The side effects and the costs can vary between Mifeprex (RU486) and methotrexate. Mifeprex (RU486) is approved by the FDA for non-surgical abortion.

The most common non-surgical abortion is performed with Mifepristone or RU486. For more detailed information on Mifepristone, please visit Mifepristone is provided through a doctor's office or clinic. Many women choose Mifepristone to avoid surgery. Others feel that Mifepristone is more private because they can end their pregnancy at home. Some feel that it is more natural than a surgical abortion. Non-surgical abortion with Mifepristone will stop your pregnancy from growing and vaginal suppositories will help expel your pregnancy. Because there is a chance of failure with Mifepristone, you must be willing to have a surgical abortion if the procedure fails. In addition, you must be able to commit to two or more visits to the clinic.

Commonly Asked Questions about Mifepristone

How does Mifepristone work?

Mifepristone blocks a hormone needed for your pregnancy to continue. When used together with another medicine called misoprostol, Mifepristone ends your pregnancy.

How effective is Mifepristone?
Mifepristone followed by the vaginal insertions is approximately 95-97% effective.

How can I get Mifepristone?
You can get Mifepristone from a clinic or certain doctor’s offices. Because it can be used only during early stages of pregnancy, you must come in for your appointment before you are 63 days from the day your last period began. The earlier you call the better.

What are the advantages of Mifepristone?
Because Mifepristone comes in pill form and is taken by mouth, you can usually avoid surgery. Also, because it works very early in your pregnancy, Mifepristone allows you to take early action to end your pregnancy. Many women feel that Mifepristone is private and more natural.

What are the side effects of Mifepristone?
Bleeding and cramping are a normal part of the process. The bleeding can be heavier than a normal period. Bleeding and spotting usually lasts from 9-16 days. In some cases, women may have severe bleeding and then would need to contact the clinic or their doctor immediately. Your provider will instruct you on how to handle any pain, nausea, headache, vomiting, or diarrhea that could also occur with the use of Mifepristone.

How safe is Mifepristone?
The FDA, which has tested it for both safety and effectiveness, has approved Mifepristone. In the past decade, over 1 million women worldwide have safely used RU486 to end their pregnancies. It is now approved for use in more than 29 countries, including the U.S. and most European countries. Mifepristone has been chosen by nearly 200,00 women in the U.S.

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