What is the abortion pill?
A medication abortion is a set of 2 pills. The first pill, mifepristone, cuts off the hormones needed to sustain the fetus’ life, causing it to die. The second pill, misoprostol, expels the fetus from your uterus with days of serious cramping and bleeding. Here is a non-graphic video explaining the procedure:
What is a surgical abortion?
A surgical abortion uses a series of surgical instruments to dilate your cervix and remove the fetus in pieces either by suction or by grasping. Here is a non-graphic video of one of the types of surgical abortion:
During a medication abortion, the first pill is taken in a clinic and the second pill is taken at home. The cramping and bleeding and passing the fetus will occur at home. It’s important to know what’s normal and what’s not in case any complications arise.
A surgical abortion is done entirely at an abortion clinic. There is also a short recovery period of rest at the clinic.
A medication abortion can be taken up to 11 weeks of pregnancy. A surgical abortion can be done at any point of pregnancy, but your gestation will determine what type of surgical instruments will be used. Abortion is illegal after 22 weeks in Kansas. If you are considering an abortion, we recommend an ultrasound to get a better idea of how far along you are.
As of May 2023, a medication abortion in Wichita can be anywhere from $350-750. A surgical abortion starts at $750 and it gets more expensive the farther along you are in your pregnancy.
Both the abortion pill and a surgical abortion involve some pain. The second abortion pill causes very intense cramps and bleeding that last for several days. A surgical abortion involves some numbing medication for your cervix, but during recovery there will be some pain, cramping, and bleeding.
The abortion pill has a chance of being reversed after the first pill is taken but before the 2nd pill is taken. The reversal is not guaranteed – it has a 64% success rate. Find more information at abortionpillreversal.com.
A surgical abortion cannot be reversed.
Risks and side effects
Common side effects of the abortion pill include abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Some women require an additional surgical procedure or hospitalization to complete the abortion or stop excessive bleeding. Some rare maternal deaths have occurred, mostly from infection or undiagnosed ectopic pregnancy.
Common side effects of a surgical abortion include cramping, nausea, and heavy bleeding. Common risks of a surgical abortion include infection, hemorrhage, incomplete abortion, and damage to the uterus, cervix, and surrounding organs. Rare maternal deaths have occurred. Surgical abortion increases the risk of complications in future pregnancies. All of these risks increase as the mother is further along in her pregnancy.
Women who have experienced abortion commonly struggle emotionally after their abortion. Some women even experience post-traumatic symptoms after their abortion. Women who aborted have a 55% higher risk of mental health problems compared to women with an “unplanned” pregnancy who gave birth. Common problems include anxiety, depression, irritability, aggressive outbursts, sleep problems, intrusive thoughts, withdrawal, inability to maintain healthy relationships, drug or alcohol abuse, and suicidal thoughts.