Abortion pills now more common than surgical abortions

DCNFLaurel Duggan, DCNF

Medication-induced abortions accounted for 54% of all abortions in the U.S. in 2020, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

Abortion pills have grown in popularity since they were first introduced in 2000, the Guttmacher Institute reported. And rules requiring women to receive their first two abortion pills at a clinic or doctor’s office were lifted during the pandemic, allowing women to speak with doctors via “telemedicine” and get the pills by mail, The New York Times reported.

The new leniency on at-home abortions was reversed by the Supreme Court in January 2021, but President Joe Biden’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) permanently lifted the in-person requirement in December 2021, according to the NYT.

Chemical, abortion-related emergency room visits soared from 2002 to 2015, according to a Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI) study. The majority of those visits were miscoded as spontaneous miscarriages by 2015, the study said.

“Not telling the ER of a recent chemical abortion could lead to costly, painful, or even fatal mistakes,” OBGYN Dr. Donna Harrison said, the CLI reported. “For example, a woman who had a recent chemical abortion will still have a positive pregnancy test. If the ER doctor does not see a pregnancy within her uterus, the doctor might take the woman for a completely unnecessary emergency surgery to look for an ectopic pregnancy.”

Chemical abortions end pregnancies through a two-drug regimen, including Mifeprex and Misoprotol, according to the CLI. The first drug reportedly blocks the natural hormone progesterone, starving the developing baby of nutrients, while the second drug induces labor to expel the baby from the womb.

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