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  • Writer's pictureMosaic Health

What’s the Difference Between the Abortion Pill and Plan B?

There seem to be a lot of questions related to Plan B and the abortion pill…

“Are they the same thing?”

“How are they different?”

“Is Plan B abortion?”

“What happens if I take a bunch of Plan B?” We know this topic is confusing, and if you’re in the midst of a pregnancy scare or unplanned pregnancy, the lack of clear information can be pretty frustrating! Mosaic Health is here to clear the air, set the record straight, and explain the difference between the abortion pill and Plan B.

What is Plan B and How Does it Work?  

You may know it as “the morning-after pill” or Plan B — whatever you call it, it’s important to know the difference between Plan B and the abortion pill. Plan B is an over-the-counter drug that can be used within 72 hours of having unprotected sex to attempt to prevent pregnancy. Plan B prevents pregnancy by interfering with the physical processes of ovulation or fertilization, depending on when it was taken. It can also prevent the implantation of a fertilized egg if it’s not able to prevent fertilization. It’s important to note that while Plan B prevents pregnancy from keeping the sperm away from the egg, the abortion pill is used to terminate a pregnancy that has already begun to grow and develop. If you have already taken a positive pregnancy test, do not take Plan B. Visit your local pregnancy center for a free ultrasound scan and medical consultation to explore your pregnancy options and resources in a safe and judgment-free environment.

Does Plan B Have Side Effects? 

Side effects of Plan B may include heavy menstrual bleeding, nausea, lower abdominal pain, fatigue, headache, dizziness, breast tenderness, and delay of menses.

What is the Abortion Pill and How Does it Work? 

The abortion pill is a two-pill process used to terminate a pregnancy in the first 10 weeks of gestation. A medical abortion process requires taking two drugs, Mifepristone and Misoprostol, to end the pregnancy. The first drug, Mifepristone, is used to terminate the pregnancy by blocking the womb from absorbing the hormone called progesterone, which is needed to maintain a healthy pregnancy. After the pregnancy ends, Misoprostol is taken to cause contractions and force the fetus from the uterus. The fetus will be expelled in the form of large (sometimes lemon-sized) blood clots.

Does the Abortion Pill Have Side Effects? 

Yes, women who take the abortion pill should expect to experience bleeding and cramping, as well as other potential side effects, including exhaustion, nausea, fever and chills, vomiting, headaches, diarrhea, and dizziness. Unfortunately, the abortion pill may be accompanied by more extreme health risks, such as sepsis, infection, and hemorrhaging.

What do I need to know before considering the abortion pill? 

Knowing if the abortion pill is right for you can be difficult. Before making this important health decision, we recommend taking the following steps: 1. Receive lab-quality pregnancy testing to confirm you are pregnant.

2. Receive an ultrasound scan to find out if you are eligible for the abortion pill and that you are not at an increased risk for severe complications.

3. Receive STD/STI testing and treatment.

4. Talk to a medical professional about the options available to you.

5, Learn about the resources available through your local pregnancy clinic and the community.

We know that may feel like a lot, especially if you’re facing an unplanned pregnancy — Thankfully, Mosaic Health is here to help you each step of the way. We offer free pregnancy testing, ultrasound scans, STI testing and treatment, options counseling, resources, and more! Schedule your free appointment today.


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