OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to assess the uptake and outcome of medical abortion in the late first trimester of pregnancy.
STUDY DESIGN: We conducted a review of the cases of 483 consecutive women in a university hospital who underwent medical abortion at 64 to 91 days of gestation and who used mifepristone that was followed 36 to 48 hours later by repeated doses of misoprostol.
RESULTS: A total of 891 abortions were carried out at 64 to 91 days of gestation from October 2000 to April 2002; of these, 483 cases (54.2%) were undertaken medically. Complete abortion occurred in 458 cases (94.8%). Efficacy decreased with advancing gestational age. Surgical evacuation was carried out in 1 woman (0.9%) at 9 to 10 weeks of gestation, in 8 women (5.3%) at 10 to 11 weeks of gestation, in 7 women (6.2%) at 11 to 12 weeks of gestation, and in 9 women (7.9%) at 12 to 13 weeks of gestation. Indications for surgery included ongoing pregnancy in 8 cases (1.7%), missed abortion in 3 cases (0.6%), incomplete abortion in 13 cases (2.7%), and emergency curettage for bleeding in 1 case (0.2%). The mean number of misoprostol doses used was 2.3; of those women who had a complete abortion, 152 women (32.6%) aborted within 4 hours of receiving the misoprostol. The mean induction to abortion interval was 5.5 hours; most cases (452; 93.6%) were treated as day cases.
CONCLUSION: Medical abortion between 64 and 91 days of gestation is effective and has a high uptake. Consideration should be given to extending the availability and choice of medical abortion to women in this gestational group.
- late first trimester
- surgical vacuum aspiration
- vaginal Misoprostol
- trimester abortion