You’re pregnant and didn’t expect it. It’s natural to feel scared and confused and to ask yourself questions like, “How did this happen?” and “What do I do next?”
When you first discover you’re unexpectedly pregnant, emotions understandably run high. So, rather than make an immediate decision, take a deep breath, and gather accurate facts to make an informed decision about your pregnancy.
Your best first step is to meet with licensed medical professionals who have no benefit from your decision other than empowering you with correct information. That means the clinic doesn’t financially benefit whether you do or don’t continue your pregnancy. This ensures you will receive the most unbiased information.
A safe clinic will review each of your three pregnancy options: abortion, parenting, and adoption, which allows you to make a decision you can feel confident about.
But wait — you just learned that you might be able to do a self-induced medical abortion at home after buying the abortion pill online. Is it true? Can you skip the office visit and buy the abortion pill online? Keep reading to learn more.
Can You Buy an Abortion Pill Online?
Abortion pills are two medications that are taken together to end a pregnancy. Mifepristone is the first medication that works by blocking progesterone. If you change your mind after taking only mifepristone, you may be able to continue your pregnancy successfully.
If you decide to move forward, you will take the second abortion pill, misoprostol. Misoprostol causes heavy uterine cramps and bleeding to expel the pregnancy.
You may have read that you can purchase the abortion pill online. While it’s true that in April of 2021 the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that they would relax on prosecuting abortion telehealth and mail-order abortion pill laws, it is still illegal to purchase abortion pills online in Missouri.
Despite that, it is still marketed as an option for women in crisis.
Is It Safe to Buy an Abortion Pill Online?
You’ve just learned that there may be ways to obtain the abortion pill online. So now the question becomes, “Is it safe?”
Because your health and your future reproductive health are at stake, let’s examine the possible risks of purchasing the abortion pill online.
- You Won’t Have the Critical Information You Need
A critical pre-abortion screening step is missed when you purchase the abortion pill online. An ultrasound is an important step. Here are a few reasons why a pre-abortion ultrasound is crucial:
An ultrasound tells you if your pregnancy is viable.
There are physical, emotional, and spiritual side effects when you have an abortion. So don’t risk having an abortion that you don’t need if your pregnancy has no chance of surviving anyway. Up to 20% of all confirmed pregnancies end in miscarriage, according to Mayo Clinic.
If you take abortion pills you purchased online without having an ultrasound, you will never know for sure if your pregnancy was viable — or if your abortion was even necessary.
A pre-abortion ultrasound tells you how far along you are in your pregnancy.
It’s essential to know exactly how far along you are in your pregnancy before having an abortion. Only an ultrasound gives you this valuable information.
Medical abortion is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for up to ten weeks of pregnancy. Typically, this is seventy days since the first day of your last period (LMP), but there are several reasons why counting on your LMP is inaccurate to determine how far along you are.
- First, you may have counted implantation bleeding as a period, and that could make you several weeks further into your pregnancy than you thought. The further along you are in your pregnancy when you have a medical abortion, the greater your chances are of experiencing complications.
- Secondly, you may have ovulated earlier or later than expected, impacting how far along you are in your pregnancy.
A pre-abortion ultrasound tells you where the pregnancy is located.
There are times when pregnancy mistakes happen in nature, and the fertilized egg implants outside the uterus instead of inside the uterus. Therefore, it is impossible to know where your pregnancy is located without an ultrasound. If it is outside the uterus, it’s called an ectopic pregnancy.
If you take the abortion pill when you don’t realize you have an ectopic pregnancy, it could put you in a life-threatening situation. The reason for this is because women delay seeking treatment for an ectopic pregnancy after taking the abortion pill, because they think the pain they’re experiencing is due to the abortion pill rather than from a medical emergency.
- It’s Impossible to Know What You Are Receiving in the Mail
You can’t know for sure who you’re talking to or what they’re sending you. Are the ingredients safe? Do they have your best interest at heart? Is their primary concern turning a profit?
You and your health are too important to put at risk by ingesting something you received by mail.
Abortion Pill Risks
Taking pills for an abortion sounds easy at first glance, but there are side effects to consider, as well as risks.
Medical abortion side effects include:
- Painful abdominal and uterine cramps
- Heavy vaginal bleeding/passing large clots
- Being able to see the pregnancy when it passes
- Nausea and vomiting
- Chills/fever under 100.4
- Pelvic pain
- Breast tenderness
According to a Finland research study, 20% of women experience at least one serious complication after a medical abortion, which can include:
- Hemorrhage (the most common complication)
- Incomplete abortion needing a follow-up surgical abortion
- Blood clots
- An undetected ectopic pregnancy (a medical emergency)
- Future infertility, miscarriage, pre-term delivery
Get the Support You Deserve
Don’t risk your physical or emotional health by ordering the abortion pill online. Willowbrook Women’s Center offers compassionate healthcare professionals to walk with you each step of the way as you decide about your unexpected pregnancy.