Article On Ru 486 Essay Research Paper

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Article On Ru 486 Essay, Research Paper Campaign for RU486 & Contraceptive Research*Picture: Feminist Majority Foundation* The Medical Uses of Mifepristone In addition to its use in terminating unwanted pregnancies, MIFEPRISTONE (formerly known as RU-486) also may be effective in treating a range of serious diseases and medical conditions, many of which particularly affect women. Yet American clinical trials for most of these uses have come to a standstill due to anti-abortion politics. A B O R T I O N & F E R T I L I T Y C O N T R O L Available to women in many countries (but currently not in the U.S.), mifepristone (formerly known as RU-486) is the first in a new generation of fertility control agents that can terminate an early pregnancy. Mifepristone works by

blocking the action of progesterone, which is necessary to sustain a pregnancy. Mifepristone, taken along with a prostaglandin, has been used by over half a million women worldwide and has found to be safe and effective as an early abortion method during the first nine weeks of a pregnancy. A woman can take mifepristone as soon as she knows she is pregnant. Mifepristone is administered orally, is non-invasive, requires no anesthesia, and bears less risk of infection. Many women prefer mifepristone because the procedure is more private and allows them greater psychological control in ending a pregnancy. Administered with a single dose of a misoprostol (a prostaglandin given as orally or as a vaginal suppository), mifepristone has been proven to be highly effective in successfully

terminating pregnancy.[1] Studies also show that mifepristone is a safe, effective post-coital contraceptive.[2] [3] Preliminary shows show, as well, that mifepristone can act as both a male and female contraceptive. [1] Spitz IM, et al. Early pregnancy termination with mifepristone and misoprostol in the United States. New England J of Medicine, 4/30/98. [2] Baird DT, Dewar M, Glasier A et al. Mifepristone (RU486) compared with high-dose estrogen and progestogen for emergency postcoital contraception. New England J of Medicine, 10/8/92. [3] Bygdeman M, Danielsson KG, et al. Contraceptive use of antiprogestin. European J of Contraception and Reproductive Health Care, 6/99. many women report feeling “less guilty” about medical abortion. some even say it feels more like

bringing on a late period or taking the morning-after pill than having an abortion. ———————————————————————— VOICE: AUG 30, 2000 Western medicine’s first approved nonsurgical abortion method, RU-486?which is also known as mifepristone?is in many ways a successor to the teas and tinctures women have used for centuries. (For a look at an underground abortion drug, see “The Star Pill.”) When taken with misoprostol, an ulcer medication that’s already approved and available in the United States, RU-486 blocks the hormone that gets the body ready for pregnancy; within hours after a woman takes the two pills (one 24 hours after the other), the lining of the uterus breaks down and the pregnancy ends. But, because it works from the

very earliest stages into the seventh week, many see RU-486 as a method that can prevent pregnancy from beginning?a distinction that could prove huge. For women who have taken it, RU-486 often sidesteps the stigma of having an abortion; a pill, many of them say, feels more natural and less invasive. Most doctors, too, seem to be more willing to prescribe a medication than to perform a surgery, however minor. That’s certainly been the case in France, where some 25 percent of abortions are now done with RU-486, which is widely available in French doctors’ offices. France, it should be noted, is not some sort of women’s rights mecca, where toilet seats are welded down and tampons are free. The country has its own history of strife over reproductive rights, its own bands of