Symptoms of a failed medical abortion

A medical abortion involves taking oral medication or dissolving medication in your vagina or inner cheek.

Medical abortions generally involve two medications called mifepristone and misoprostol. There are several approaches to using the medication. Some involve taking two oral pills, while others involve taking one pill orally and dissolving the other in your vagina.

A failed abortion means that the abortion has only been partially successful. The pregnancy has ended— no fetus will develop, but your body has only expelled part of the tissue and products of pregnancy.

RELATED: Post Abortion Syndrome: Symptoms

Symptoms of a failed medical abortion

  • Severe bleeding. Both medical and surgical abortions usually cause bleeding that is different from a normal menstrual period. Severe bleeding can mean:
    • Passing clots that are bigger than a golf ball, lasting 2 or more hours.
    • Soaking more than 2 large pads in an hour, for 2 hours in a row.
    • Bleeding heavily for 12 hours in a row.
  • Signs of infection in your whole body, such as headache, muscle aches, dizziness, or a general feeling of illness. Severe infection is possible without fever.
  • Severe pain in the abdomen that is not relieved by pain medicine, rest, or heat
  • Hot flushes or a fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher that lasts longer than 4 hours
  • Vomiting that lasts more than 4 to 6 hours
  • Sudden abdominal (belly) swelling or rapid heart rate
  • Vaginal discharge that has increased in amount or smells bad
  • Pain, swelling, or redness in the genital area

You must call your doctor to have an ultrasound and to get treated  if you have any of these symptoms. This is absolutely necessary because the tissue and blood that remains in the body can cause heavy bleeding or an infection.

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