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Oct 9 ru-486

October 06, 2000

RU-486: What you need to know about the abortion pill



By KEVIN CLAPP / Staff Writer


With U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval of early-term abortion pill Mifeprex, women seeking to end a pregnancy within its first seven weeks now have an alternative to surgery.

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But how does the drug work, and how long does the process last? What are the side effects? What should women expect?

Not all aspects of getting an abortion will change. Diane Silas, administrator of Hagerstown Reproductive Health Services, said working with women to ensure they are comfortable with their decision remains the first, critical step before ending pregnancy in any way.

"It's the first part of the process and hardest part of the process," she said. "The first step, always, is to reach the decision."

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So far, the price of Mifeprex has not been determined, and Silas said she has been told to expect protocols about it soon from Danco Laboratories, marketers of the drug.

She also said that while it is likely Hagerstown Reproductive Health Services will offer Mifeprex, no final decision has been made yet.

"Whether we'll do it the first day it's available will be a question," she said.

Regardless of where it is available, once a decision is made to use Mifeprex, this is what women can expect.

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