Who can and can’t use abortion pills?
Hint: most people can!
Abortion pills are safe and effective when used correctly by the average person. But not everyone is average! If you’re wondering whether you have a health condition that rules out having an abortion with pills, this information can help.
A person can use abortion pills in all of these circumstances:
Bigger or smaller than average? No problem! It doesn’t matter how tall someone is or how much they weigh. People of all sizes use the same amounts of the medications in the same way. (Don’t confuse abortion pills with the morning-after pill, which works best for people in a certain weight range.)
Have an IUD? It’s best to have it removed before using misoprostol. An IUD can make the heavy cramps caused by the medication even more painful, and risks injuring the uterus as it contracts.
Breastfeeding? A person can continue to breastfeed even while the abortion is happening. The medications used for abortion (misoprostol alone or in combination with mifepristone) will not affect the amount of milk being produced and will not cause any harm to a nursing infant.
Pregnant with twins (or more)? The dosage of abortion pills and the protocol for taking them is the same whether or not someone is pregnant with multiples.
Past Caesarian section (“C-section”) birth? In the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, abortion pills are safe to use whether or not a person has previously had a C-section.
Transgender? Anyone with a uterus can use abortion pills. The medications do not interfere with hormone therapy.
HIV+? A person with HIV can safely use abortion pills as long as they take extra precautions. An iron supplement beforehand will help prevent anemia. Because people with HIV have a slightly higher risk of infection, they may also want to use antibiotics after the abortion.
There are only a few situations where a person should not use abortion pills:
- An ectopic pregnancy
- Chronic adrenal failure
- A bleeding disorder
- Porphyria, a rare type of blood disorder
- An allergy to mifepristone or misoprostol
Do you have a health condition that isn’t on either of these lists? The information available at AbortionPillInfo.org is probably all you need – but you can also send a specific question to our trained counselors, who are on duty 15 hours a day in several languages, and get a private, secure response within a few hours.