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Considering Abortion? : Abortion Questions Answered :
Types of Abortion

Abortion Pill

The abortion pill refers to a pregnancy termination performed using medication instead of surgery. The abortion pill is FDA approved for use up to 10 weeks gestation. Ultrasound is the most reliable way to see how far along a pregnancy is. For information about getting a free ultrasound, contact us.

Abortion Pill Information

The abortion pill usually requires three steps and a follow up visit. 

1. Ultrasound and Abortion Pill Information

Many women who are considering taking the abortion pill will find it helpful to start with an ultrasound. An ultrasound shows how far along the pregnancy is, which is important since the abortion pill should not be used after 10 weeks. 

Ultrasound also confirms that the pregnancy is growing inside the uterus. One risk of early pregnancy is ectopic pregnancy, which is when the fertilized egg implants outside of the uterus. An ectopic pregnancy is a medical emergency, so it must be ruled out before the medication abortion proceeds.

Ultrasound also provides information about if the pregnancy may miscarry naturally. Researchers estimate that about 1 in 5 or 6 pregnancies ends in a natural miscarriage and ultrasound can identify if a miscarriage may be in progress before the woman begins to experience symptoms. Since a miscarriage is often handled differently by insurance from an abortion, many women find it helpful to learn about their chance of miscarriage. Avenue Women's Center is able to offer a limited ultrasound to provide information and assitance about the need and eligibility for the abortion pill.

Avenue also provides information about how the abortion pill works and what women can expect during the course of treatment. Many women find it helpful to get this information in a neutral setting.

2. Health History and Abortion Pill Phase One

Before a medication abortion begins, the health care provider will ask you about your medical history. People with certain medical conditions or who are taking some medications may not be good candidates for a medication abortion.

After the medical history and the ultrasound, the first drug in the medication abortion is administered. This drug stops the pregnancy from progressing.

Some clinics may offer the ultrasound and abortion pill information or counseling during the same visit as the abortion pill is given. However, it can be helpful to receive the ultrasound information (on the age of the pregnancy and the chance of miscarriage) at a separate visit to allow time for processing anything that is new or unexpected. Please contact Avenue Women's Center for more information on a pregnancy consultation and ultrasound.

3. Abortion Pill Phase Two

The second drug is typically administered two days after the first. Most Illinois clinics give patients instructions for taking the second round of pills at home. Patients may also receive a prescription for antibiotics and information on or a prescription for pain medication.

The second medication causes the cervix to soften and the uterus to cramp so the contents of the uterus are expelled. Cramping and bleeding, similar to or greater than a heavy period, are expected. Some patients experience nausea, weakness, or fever/chills. Patients should receive a 24/7 hotline number they can call, and are encouraged to seek immediate medical attention and assistance regarding any questions or concerns.

4. Follow Up Visit

The follow-up visit usually includes an ultrasound or blood test to make sure the abortion is complete. Tissue left in the uterus could cause bleeding or infection, so it is very important for all patients to keep their follow-up appointments. In cases where the abortion is not complete, more of the second medication may be administered, or the patient may receive a suction abortion.

We offer individual consultations including information on abortion procedures and other options. Please contact us if you are interested in receiving a caring, free, confidential consultation.

Abortion Pill Questions

Is the medication abortion (abortion pill) better than a surgical abortion?

This is a very personal decision, and there is not one right answer. Your health history, personal history, preferences, and current lifestyle may all influence the choice you make. The trained client advocates at Avenue can talk with you about your personal situation, and our limited ultrasounds can provide needed information about the age of the pregnancy. Please contact us to learn more about how our advisors can help. And of course, please talk with your doctor about your decision.

Will taking the abortion pill impact my ability to get pregnant or have children in the future?

Some studies show that the abortion pill does not cause problems for future pregnancies. It is always wise to discuss concerns like this with your medical provider. Many women find it helpful to also speak with a neutral, informed client advocate. Although it can be difficult to reflect on why this question comes to mind, women who take time to consider all the thoughts and feelings around an abortion decision tend to feel more satisfied with their choice. Please contact us if we can help you.

What is the cost of the abortion pill?

The cost of the abortion pill varies by clinic. It typically includes two office visits and ultrasounds. The average cost for a medication abortion is about $500. Some insurance plans help cover the cost of the procedure. When the cost of the abortion pill is a concern, many women find it helpful to come in to Avenue Women's Center for a limited ultrasound to learn if they may have a natural miscarriage. Please contact us to learn more about our services.

How much time will I have to take off work/school after taking the abortion pill?

For the medication abortion, you will typically need to arrange to go twice to the doctor’s office or clinic in addition to spending one day at home resting. The first office visit will include a health history and ultrasounds, plus the administration of the first pills and instructions for taking the second set of pills. The doctor will explain how much time you will need to allow for the pain and bleeding to subside. If you have a particular concern related to your lifestyle or work situation, you may want to call your provider in advance of your appointment.

Ready to talk in person? Our first-step clinic can provide a free consultation to answer your unique questions. Please reach out today!

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