A Chicago doctor who serves low-income patients warned women about the dangers of “self managed” abortions as ads pop up on college campuses promoting mail-order abortion pills.
Dr. Carrie Mendoza, an emergency medicine specialist and FAIR in Medicine fellow, said the information that some pro-abortion groups are promoting is “medically questionable” and “dangerous” in an interview with The College Fix.
One, Plan C, which sells abortion drugs through the mail, has been advertising to college students, including at Dartmouth University in New Hampshire. Stickers advertising abortions on campus read, “Do you need to be un-pregnant?” and include a QR code that directs students to the Plan C website, according to The Fix.
The abortion group claims abortion pills are “safer than Tylenol” and women can take them at home without ever seeing a doctor.
But Mendoza said the claim is “potentially dangerous.”
“Tylenol taken as directed is safe to reduce pain or fever while an overdose can cause liver damage,” she told The Fix. “Conversely, abortion pills taken at home induce bleeding and pain that may be severe and result in Emergency Department visits when taken without the guidance of a physician.”
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Data refutes the safety claim, too. A recent study by the pro-abortion group Gynuity “found an ER and urgent care visit rate of 6%” for women taking the abortion drug, which is “107 times greater than the rate for acetaminophen/Tylenol,” according to a recent Live Action News analysis.
Despite these and other studies, Plan C tells women that they can take abortion pills “without consulting a medical professional. You then use them at home.”
Mendoza said this advice could put women’s lives in danger, too.
“[It’s] important to consult with a physician because it’s not always obvious how far along a woman is in her pregnancy, and a doctor would be able to determine that, or she could have an ectopic pregnancy,” she told The Fix. “It’s also important for a medical provider to be aware of her medical history and any medications she may be taking.”
Here’s more from the interview:
Mendoza frequently treats low-income patients from the South Side of Chicago.
“I have seen what can happen firsthand with women who experience complications from abortion, such as very heavy bleeding and uncontrolled pain. Side-stepping the doctor patient relationship, as Plan C Pills suggests, can lead women to become the victim of adverse outcomes and puts them at risk,” she said.
She said the best healthcare means caring for the patient throughout the process — something that “self managed” abortion providers like Plan C do not do.
“Abortion advocates need to take full responsibility for the complete health of the patient, including potential complications,” Mendoza said. Especially women from underprivileged backgrounds “deserve to have a relationship with a doctor who can safeguard their health. Taking abortion pills alone at home without any guidance from a medical professional is the opposite of that.”
Millions of unborn babies have been killed with the abortion drug mifepristone, or RU-486, since its approval under the Clinton administration. Currently, it is used for almost half of all abortions in the U.S., according to the Guttmacher Institute.
Studies and data from abortion groups themselves indicate the risks of mifepristone are more common than what abortion activists often claim, with as many as one in 17 women requiring hospital treatment. A recent study by the Charlotte Lozier Institute found that the rate of abortion-related emergency room visits by women taking the abortion drug increased more than 500 percent between 2002 and 2015.
Another new study from the University of Toronto, “Short-Term Adverse Outcomes After Mifepristone–Misoprostol Versus Procedural Induced Abortion,” published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, found that one in ten women who took the abortion pill had to go to the emergency room, according to Pregnancy Help News.
Similarly, a 2009 study “Immediate Complications After Medical Compared With Surgical Termination of Pregnancy,” in “Obstetrics and Gynecology” found a complication rate of approximately 20 percent for the abortion drugs compared to 5.6 percent for surgical abortions. Hemorrhages and incomplete abortions were among the most common complications.
Along with millions of unborn babies’ deaths, the FDA has linked mifepristone to at least 28 women’s deaths and 4,000 serious complications. However, under President Barack Obama, the FDA stopped requiring that non-fatal complications from mifepristone be reported. So the numbers almost certainly are much higher.