What happens if you take abortion pills and you're not pregnant?
If your period is late and you don't want to be pregnant, it can be a short distance between "It's probably just stress or something," to full-on panic. But what if you take a pregnancy test, get a negative result, and your period still doesn't come? What if you have a false-positive test result (which are rare, but they do occur, especially if you were recently pregnant)? If you do take abortion pills, and you're not pregnant, what happens?
Here's the good news: it's not dangerous to your health to take mifepristone and misoprostol, or misoprostol on its own, if you aren't pregnant, and it doesn't have a negative impact on future pregnancies or your fertility (neither does using abortion pills when you are pregnant). In addition to being used to terminate pregnancy, misoprostol treats and prevents ulcers, so it's given to people who aren't pregnant all the time. The less good news is that even if you aren't pregnant when you take the pills, you might still experience the side effects that come with them, such as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and a low fever for up to 24 hours.
Before you take abortion pills, you should absolutely confirm that you're pregnant, and you can do so by visiting a clinic or taking a home pregnancy test (check out our post on when to take a test so that you get the most accurate results). Since false positives and negatives do happen, taking more than one test and confirming those results with a healthcare provider is a good idea before you take further action. You also might have a positive test one day and a negative test the next, which could indicate you've had a chemical pregnancy, a very early miscarriage that happens around five weeks of gestation (before most people even know they're pregnant) and accounts for between 50 and 75% of miscarriages.
We're here to help you access abortion pills and supply you with scientifically accurate information about how to use them, how they work, and what you can expect when you take them. Check out the frequently asked questions on our website.