What If I Take the Abortion Pill With an Ectopic Pregnancy?
You’ve had a positive pregnancy test and are considering abortion. There are many questions that come along with that decision. Is an abortion safe? What is normal to feel and what is not normal to feel after taking the abortion pill? Another question that you could be asking yourself is, what would happen if I took an abortion pill with an ectopic pregnancy? In short: an abortion pill would not work on an ectopic pregnancy.
What is an ectopic pregnancy?
An ectopic pregnancy occurs when a fertilized egg implants outside of the uterus, most commonly in one of the fallopian tubes. A pregnancy that occurs outside of the uterus cannot survive. A fallopian tube isn’t flexible like a uterus is, therefore the fertilized egg could burst the fallopian tube as it develops. Here are some possible symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy:
- Severe pain on one side of the abdomen or pelvis
- Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
- Abnormally low blood pressure
- The passage of tissue (not just blood clots) from your vagina
- Bleeding or spotting
- Shoulder pain
What does the abortion pill do?
An abortion pill uses two drugs, mifepristone and misoprostol, to complete a medical abortion. First, a woman is given mifepristone to block the effect of the hormone progesterone, which is necessary for the continuation of pregnancy. Secondly, a woman is given misoprostol which causes cramping that expels the pregnancy from her uterus. An abortion pill would not be effective in the case of an ectopic pregnancy because the abortion pill only expels what is inside the uterus. The symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy can overlap with the symptoms a woman could experience after a medical abortion.
What steps should I take?
An ectopic pregnancy is a life-threatening medical emergency. Immediate medical attention is imperative. It is crucial to know where your pregnancy is implanted prior to any abortion procedure. The only way to confirm where your pregnancy has implanted is through an ultrasound. At AVA Care, we offer ultrasounds and information about all of your options, at no cost to you. Our staff understands the difficulty of facing an unintended pregnancy and believes that information empowers women to make confident and informed decisions.
AVA Care is here to Advocate for you, Validate your concerns, and provide Answers to your questions. We are here for you – no matter what you decide. Schedule an appointment online or call 540.434.7528 today.
Dr. Teresa Klansek
The content on this page has been reviewed and approved by our Medical Director Dr. Teresa Klansek.