Southwestern Women’s Surgery Center – Dallas, Texas
Up to 10 Weeks Gestational Age by LMP
We offer a medication abortion option for women up to 10 weeks LMP. A medication abortion is less invasive and allows a woman to be in her own home when the abortion occurs. The initial visit is a consultation with the physician and a session with a trained counselor. You should expect to be in the office for two to three hours on this first day. The law requires that you wait at least 24 hours from that time before the first medication can be administered.
Mifepristone (Mifeprex, or RU-486) is a medication that blocks the action of progesterone; a hormone needed to maintain pregnancy. It alters the endometrium, the lining of the uterus, causing an early pregnancy to detach from the uterine wall. It also helps to soften and dilate the cervix. While you are at the clinic on your second visit, you will take 200 mg of mifepristone and receive Misoprostol to take at home 24-48 hours after the mifepristone. Misoprostol is very effective at causing the uterus to contract (cramp) and thus expelling the pregnancy.
While the medication abortion is 98% effective, there is a 2% failure rate. Because the medications used are toxic to the pregnancy, a medication abortion failure could require an aspiration procedure. Follow up is required to ensure the completion of the process.
What to expect
Cramping and bleeding are an expected part of ending a pregnancy. Usually, these symptoms mean that the treatment is working. But sometimes you can get cramping and bleeding and still be pregnant. This is why you must return to your provider approximately one week after the initial visit. If you are not already bleeding after taking mifepristone, you probably will begin to bleed once you take misoprostol. Your bleeding may be similar to, or greater than, a normal heavy period. Lighter bleeding could last two to three weeks and spotting may continue until the start of your next menstrual period. If you soak through two thick, full-size sanitary pads per hour for two hours or if you are concerned about heavy bleeding, contact your provider.
• During the abortion process you may eat and drink normally. It is best to avoid strenuous activity, avoid lifting over 10 pounds, and avoid spending a lot of time on your feet. Be guided by how you feel.
• Please put NOTHING in the vagina until after the follow-up exam has determined the abortion is completed.
• Do not have intercourse.
• Do not use tampons; use sanitary pads only.
• Do not douche, go swimming, or take tub baths; showers are fine.
If your temperature is over 100.4 degrees, please call us.
You will have an appointment scheduled for your check-up one week after your abortion.
Be sure to call if:
- Your bleeding is excessive (soaking 4 pads over 2 hours).
- You experience severe abdominal pain.
- Your temperature is ever 100.4 degrees.
- You have any foul-smelling vaginal discharge.
- You have severe fatigue or extreme malaise.
- You have severe nausea or vomiting.