How late in pregnancy can you take the abortion pill?

The abortion drugs are only FDA-approved if your pregnancy is up to 10 weeks or 70 days of gestation, and taking them when your pregnancy is further along puts you at risk for serious complications. This is why it's vital to determine your pregnancy's gestational age through ultrasound.

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Why Does an Ultrasound Matter if I’m Considering Abortion?

Even if you are thinking about abortion, an ultrasound is essential to provide you with key details about your pregnancy that will reveal which options are available to you.

Facts About Medical Abortion You Might Not Know

A medical abortion, also known as the “abortion pill,” is the process of terminating a pregnancy with drugs.

The abortion pill is only FDA-approved up to 10 weeks or 70 days of gestation. You should not attempt to take the abortion pill if your pregnancy is over ten weeks along. 

How can I find out the age of my pregnancy?

While there are many period tracker apps that claim to estimate your pregnancy’s gestational age, these are not reliable. You shouldn’t go by this date alone when seeking the abortion pill or monitoring your pregnancy. These apps only use limited information as opposed to an ultrasound scan, which collects accurate data by taking measurements.

An ultrasound scan is the only reliable way to know the age of your pregnancy. During this simple scan, the nurse will take measurements of the pregnancy and screen for certain complications. These details are critical to know for your health and well-being.

What happens if my pregnancy is past 10 weeks and I take the abortion pill?

Since medical abortion drugs are only FDA-approved up to 10 weeks of gestation, taking them when your pregnancy is further along puts you at a greater risk for complications.

The risks of medical abortion include:

  • Incomplete abortion, which happens when parts of the terminated pregnancy remain in the uterus
  • An ongoing pregnancy if the procedure doesn’t work
  • Heavy and prolonged bleeding
  • Infection
  • Fever
  • Digestive system discomfort

Where can I get a free ultrasound?

Getting an ultrasound is the number one way to protect your health if you’re considering taking the abortion drugs. 

Ultrasound can reveal the age of your pregnancy, as well as the location (this is necessary for ruling out a life-threatening ectopic pregnancy) and progression (to make sure you haven’t experienced a miscarriage, which happens in roughly 26% of pregnancies). 

To find a free ultrasound location in your area, type in your zip code here.