Medication to Manage Abortion and Miscarriage

Jessica Beaman, Christine Prifti, Eleanor Bimla Schwarz, Mindy Sobota

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Abortion and miscarriage are common, affecting millions of US women each year. By age 45, one in four women in the USA will have had an abortion, and at least as many will have had a miscarriage. Most individuals seeking abortion services do so before 10 weeks’ gestation when medication abortions are a safe and effective option, using a regimen of oral mifepristone followed by misoprostol tablets. When a pregnancy is non-viable before 13 weeks’ gestation, it is referred to as an early pregnancy loss or miscarriage and can be managed using the same mifepristone and misoprostol regimen. Given their safety and efficacy, mifepristone and misoprostol can be offered in ambulatory settings without special equipment or on-site emergency services. As more patients find it difficult to access clinical care when faced with an undesired pregnancy or a miscarriage, it is important for general internists and primary care providers to become familiar with how to use medications to manage these common conditions. We summarize the most recent evidence regarding the use of mifepristone with misoprostol for early abortion and miscarriage. We discuss clinical considerations and resources for integrating mifepristone and misoprostol into clinical practice. By learning to prescribe mifepristone and misoprostol, clinicians can expand access to time-sensitive health services for vulnerable populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of general internal medicine
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020


  • family planning
  • medication abortion
  • miscarriage
  • primary care
  • women’s health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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