Medication abortion (also called the pill) can be taken up to 70 days (10 weeks pregnant) after the start of your last menstrual period.
- It’s called RU-486 and was approved by the FDA in 2000; it is also called a medical or chemical termination.
- The pill is actually two drugs, mifepristone and misoprostol, taken in two separate doses.
- It is usually taken between 4-6 weeks but can be taken up to 11 weeks in most cases.
- It is not an option for people with certain medical conditions.
- The pill is not the same as the emergency contraceptive, The Morning After Pill or Plan B One Step.
- Abortion pill reversal is possible if action is taken after the first dose.
Action – The first medication, Mifeprex blocks progesterone. Progesterone is a hormone that is necessary for the pregnancy to survive. Without progesterone, the embryo dies. The second medication, Mifepristone, causes cramping, expelling the embryo and uterine contents.
Side effects – Cramping and bleeding are expected. Bleeding may be like a heavy period. Bleeding can last 9 to 16 days and possibly up to 30 days. Other possible side effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, chills, weakness, dizziness and headache.
Complications – Possible complications include heavy bleeding requiring surgery to stop the bleeding, and serious infection. Before taking any medication, you should discuss the risks with your doctor and know what do to if complications arise.
Follow-up – It is important to follow-up with your doctor 1 to 2 weeks after taking this medication regime to see if a termination has occurred and to assess for complications.
Surgical terminations are done by opening the cervix and passing instruments into the uterus to suction, grasp, pull, and scrape the pregnancy out. The exact procedure is determined by the baby’s level of growth.
Aspiration/Suction23,24 – Up to 13 weeks LMP. Most early surgical terminations are performed using this method. Local anesthesia is typically offered to reduce pain. The abortion involves opening the cervix, passing a tube inside the uterus, and attaching it to suction device which pulls the embryo out.
Dilation and Evacuation25,26 (D&E) – 13 weeks LMP and up. Most second trimester abortions are performed using this method. Local anesthesia, oral, or intravenous pain medications and sedation are commonly used. Besides the need to open the cervix much wider, the main difference between this procedure and a first trimester abortion is the use of forceps to grasp fetal parts and remove the baby in pieces. D&E is associated with a much higher risk of complications compared to a first trimester surgical abortion.
D&E After Viability27-29 – 24 weeks LMP and up. This procedure typically takes 2–3 days and is associated with increased risk to the life and health of the mother. General anesthesia is usually recommended, if available. Drugs may be injected into the fetus or the amniotic fluid to stop the baby’s heart before starting the procedure. The cervix is opened wide, the amniotic sac is broken, and forceps are used to dismember the fetus. The “Intact D&E” pulls the fetus out legs first, then crushes the skull in order to remove the fetus in one piece.
TYPICAL COST OF ABORTION IN TENNESSEE
ABORTION PILL COST
Medication abortion (also called the pill), can be taken up to 10 weeks pregnant. The typical cost for the abortion pill in Tennessee is $650 but could be higher depending on the provider.
SUCTION ABORTION COST
Suction aspiration, also called suction curettage, or vacuum aspiration termination, is performed between 5 to 12 weeks of pregnancy. The cost for Suction aspiration in Tennessee ranges from $650-$700.
D&E ABORTION COST
D&E abortion (dilation and evacuation procedure) is performed between 9-20 weeks of pregnancy. The typical cost for D&E termination in Tennessee is between $850-$1,250 or more.
LATE ABORTION COST
Late abortion is performed in the third trimester of pregnancy, between 16-24 weeks. The typical cost for late termination procedures in Tennessee varies by provider.
no-cost & confidential services
Before making any decisions, you will need to first know if you are really pregnant. An ultrasound exam is the most reliable way to confirm a possible pregnancy and will help you make a fully informed choice. With several termination methods available today, how far along you are will determine what is available and how much it will cost.
Before An Abortion Safety Checklist
1. HAS YOUR PREGNANCY BEEN CONFIRMED?
Even if you’ve had a positive pregnancy test, you will need an ultrasound to confirm the pregnancy, determine how far along you are, and rule out a tubal or ectopic pregnancy. You should also verify your HCG levels before booking an abortion appointment. As many as 1 in 4 pregnancies end in a natural miscarriage, and more than 80% of miscarriages occur in the first three months of pregnancy.
2. DOES THE CLINIC REQUIRE AN ULTRASOUND VERIFICATION BEFORE AN ABORTION? HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
An ultrasound can cost an additional $200-$400 dollars if it’s not covered by insurance. Choices offers limited obstetric ultrasounds free of charge.
3. DO YOU KNOW IF THE CLINIC HAS A DOCTOR ON STAFF OR IF THE PROCEDURE IS PERFORMED BY MEDICAL PERSONNEL?
If you live in or near Chattanooga and are trying to obtain an abortion, Georgia and Tennessee state laws require a doctor to perform a surgical abortion. Learn more about your legal rights and how clinics are regulated. checkmyclinic.org
4. HAVE YOU BEEN TESTED RECENTLY FOR STDS/STIS?
An untreated infection can cause major complications if not treated prior to an abortion. At our center we offer free testing for three common STIs, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and trichomoniasis. Your safety matters. Know for sure.
5. HAVE YOU RECEIVED ABORTION EDUCATION ABOUT THE ABORTION PILL AND THE TYPES OF SURGICAL ABORTIONS?
We believe an empowered decision is an informed decision. At your first appointment, we provide accurate information on abortion types and procedures and will walk through all your pregnancy options.
6. WHAT ARE THE CLINIC’S PROCEEDINGS IN THE EVENT OF A COMPLICATION OR EMERGENCY?
Abortion is a serious medical procedure. Take the time to ask questions about what would happen in the event of an emergency or if medical complications arise. Learn more about clinics and any safety issues ahead of time. checkmyclinic.org
7. ARE YOU AWARE OF POSSIBLE COMPLICATIONS ASSOCIATED WITH THE ABORTION PROCEDURE? HAVE YOU BEEN INFORMED OF POSSIBLE EMOTIONAL SIDE-EFFECTS AFTER AN ABORTION?
Choices provides medical consultations free of charge with one of our nurses during your ultrasound exam. Take the time you need to share your health history and ask any questions you may have about complications, side-effects and even discuss how you may feel after your abortion. We care about you as a whole – your physical, mental and emotional health.
8. DO YOU KNOW WHAT OPTIONS ARE AVAILABLE TO YOU IF THE ABORTION FAILS?
On occasion, there are incomplete abortions. Find out what steps you need to take and don’t be afraid to seek emergency help right away. You can also learn more about the Abortion Pill Reversal protocol. If you decide to continue the pregnancy, reversal is possible if you have only taken the first dose of the abortion pill.
Does Choices provide the abortion pill or in-clinic abortions?
Choices does not offer or refer for abortion. Unlike abortion providers, Choices does not profit from any decision you choose. If you are considering an abortion, we provide medically accurate abortion information you need to make a fully informed choice.
We provide you with a free limited ultrasound to determine a viable pregnancy and to see how far along in pregnancy you are. This information helps determine the type of abortion procedure available to you.
We can walk through all your options, discuss side effects of the different types of abortion and answer any questions or concerns you may have. If you would like to talk to someone about their own abortion experience, our confidential line for after abortion support is 423-266-8322.
Information taken from U.S. Food and Drug Administration (2016). “Mifeprex Medication Guide.” U.S. Department of Health. Retrieved from http://www.fda.gov/downloads/Drugs/DrugSafety/UCM088643.pdf
23. Paul, M., Lichtenberg, E. S., Borgatta, L., Grimes, D. A., Stubblefield, P. G., & Creinin, M. D. (2009). First Trimester Aspiration Abortion. In Management of unintended and abnormal pregnancy: Comprehensive abortion care (pp. 135-156).
24. Chichester, UK: Wiley-Blackwell. Planned Parenthood Federation of America Inc. (2014). In-Clinic Abortion Procedures : Planned Parenthood. Retrieved July 19, 2014.
25. Planned Parenthood Federation of America Inc. (2014). In-Clinic Abortion Procedures : Planned Parenthood. Retrieved October 28, 2015.
26. Paul, M., Lichtenberg, E. S., Borgatta, L., Grimes, D. A., Stubblefield, P. G., & Creinin, M. D. (2009). Dilation and Evacuation. In Management of unintended and abnormal pregnancy: Comprehensive abortion care (pp. 157-74). Chichester, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.
27. Paul, M., Lichtenberg, E. S., Borgatta, L., Grimes, D. A., Stubblefield, P. G., & Creinin, M. D. (2009). Dilation and Evacuation. In Management of unintended and abnormal pregnancy: Comprehensive abortion care (pp. 157-74). Chichester, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.
28. American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. (2013). Practice Bulletin: Second-Trimester Abortion (135).
29. Pasquini, L., et al. Intracardiac injection of potassium chloride as method for feticide: Experience from a single U.K. tertiary centre. Br J Obstet Gynaecol. 2008;115(4):528–31.
Nurse Practitioner - APN, CNM
The content on this page has been reviewed and approved by our Nurse Practitioner Stephanie Huskins-Darnell.
Erika D. Hogans
Nurse Sonographer - BSN, RN, CCM
The content on this page has been reviewed and approved by our Nurse Sonographer Erika D. Hogans.
951 Eastgate Loop Suite 1000
Chattanooga, TN 37411
951 Eastgate Loop Suite 1000
Chattanooga, TN 37411