Schedule Today

“I’m Not Sure I Understand the Abortion Pill Process”

A pregnancy test can bring about a lot of emotions and seeing a positive result can feel like a life-changing moment. When this happens unexpectedly, you may experience some confusion and fear. Knowing what to do next can often feel tricky to navigate. When considering your available pregnancy options, you may have heard about the abortion pill. But perhaps you still have questions about the process. Learning more about what the abortion pill, or RU-486, entails can help you feel more equipped in taking the next steps of your pregnancy decision.

Do you have questions about the process of the abortion pill or medication abortion? Avenue Women’s Center is here to equip you with the information you need at one of our six DuPage County centers. During your appointment with us, we’ll answer your questions about abortion, including the abortion pill, as well as possible alternatives available to you. By providing you with limited medical services and referrals, we’ll ensure you have access to any of the resources you need to make an informed choice.

Contact us today for a confidential session with our caring staff at no cost!

Looking for Answers About the Abortion Pill

The anxiety you may be feeling can make it tempting to want to decide quickly on taking the abortion pill. But as with any major decision, it’s important to gather research. It’s recommended you know what all of your options are so you can formulate a plan around the accurate information you receive. The burden of doing research does not need to fall solely on you. There are plenty of professional resources who can assist with guiding you through your options.

It’s normal to have questions about your options, including medical abortion. Each pregnancy choice typically involves several steps before you can follow through with one of them. If you’re leaning toward taking the abortion pill, then after confirming your pregnancy, one of your first steps may be to gather information.

Is a Medical Abortion Different from a Surgical One?

The abortion pill is often referred to as either a chemical or medical abortion. It is FDA approved for use through the first ten weeks of pregnancy (measured by the start of your last menstrual period). While this type of abortion differs from a surgical procedure, there are a few steps you may want to familiarize yourself with.

The first clinic visit is usually when you will receive the first dose of the abortion pill, known as Mifepristone. What Mifepristone typically does is block the progesterone hormone that is needed to keep the pregnancy going. 48 hours later, and possibly at your house, you may take the second pill or set of pills, called Misoprostol.

The second dose of the abortion pill is known to bring on contractions in order to expel the uterine content. How long this process may take can vary, as the contractions may continue for a few hours or days.

Some women have reported experiencing side effects such as cramping, nausea, vomiting, and bleeding. In rare cases, women have had to undergo a surgical abortion after the medical one was determined to be incomplete during a check-up one to two weeks after the medical abortion.

Vaginal bleeding or spotting may last for a few weeks after taking the abortion pill. But if you notice that you have a high fever or the bleeding and cramping feel excessive and painful, then seek medical attention right away.

Are Certain Women Not Eligible for the Abortion Pill?

Women who have high blood pressure, heart disease, anemia, uncontrolled diabetes are typically not eligible for a medical abortion. In addition, if you have an IUD in place, or your pregnancy has implanted outside of the wall of your uterus, then your doctor may not recommend the abortion pill to you.

As part of your process of information-gathering, learning more about your health is often relevant to your unexpected pregnancy decision. You may want to go ahead and schedule an ultrasound exam to see if there is a risk the pregnancy will end naturally through a miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy. If either of these conditions is detected, then alternative medical treatment may be advised instead of abortion.

Try to remember that you have time to consider all of your options carefully, and compassionate resources are here to help you sift through all of the research that’s relevant to your choices. Your questions are valid, and you deserve to have reliable answers.

Are you thinking about having a medical abortion, or taking the abortion pill? Avenue Women’s Center is here to provide first step services, at no cost. Receive a free, limited ultrasound exam, to learn more about your eligibility for the pill, due to your gestational age. You’ll also find out if the pregnancy is viable or likely to continue on its own. Receive important information regarding the abortion pill procedure, potential risks, and alternatives.

Schedule your free appointment with us today!



  • American Pregnancy Association. Possible Physical Side Effects After Abortion. Retrieved from:
  • Healthline. (2018, July). Do Abortions Hurt? What to Expect When Taking the Pill or Undergoing In-Office Surgery. Retrieved from:

Reviewed by Patricia Kuenzi, APN-CNP, MSN, ANP, PNP.




The information provided here is general in nature.  It is not a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional. Before any medical procedure, it is imperative that you discuss your personal medical history, risks, and concerns with your doctor. If you have questions during or after a procedure, your doctor should be immediately contacted. Avenue Women’s Center is not an emergency center.  If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as bleeding and/or pain, seek immediate medical attention.  Contact your physician, go to an emergency room, or call 911.