In February, most of us got our first glimpse into the reality of RU-486 home chemical abortions.
It was then that publicity seeker Angie Jackson decided to "demystify" the RU-486 experience by live tweeting what she thought would be a "4 hour bleed-out."
No one was more surprised than Angie to find her "bleed-out" would actually take over two weeks. Although Angie stopped posting her symptoms on Day 9 because she realized I was reposting them on my blog, she vaguely noted on Day 15, "nausea and other things [still] going on."
But until Angie decided she had provided too much demystification, she described recurring headaches, nausea, vomiting, bleeding, pelvic pain, backaches and cramping so bad she told of having trouble walking across the room. She went through an entire bottle of 20 Tylenol with codeine in a week.
Meanwhile, a copycat who called herself Next Thursday, saying Angie had inspired her, began
Now, that's all I have to go on regarding the actual RU-486 abortion experience, but these incidents do not paint a complication-free portrait. Meanwhile, Planned Parenthood says RU-486 abortions are "safe for most women."
I don't know that. No one knows that. The FDA has not updated its adverse events for RU-486 abortions or given a congressional report for over four years – and RU-486 has only been legal in the U. S. for nine and a half years.
So we can guess the number of complications has doubled, particularly given RU-486's increased popularity, since the FDA reported in May 2006 that 950 adverse events had been reported:
Approximately one-quarter of the 950 patients were hospitalized. The most frequently reported event of interest in the case reports was blood loss requiring a transfusion. The next most frequently reported events were infection and ectopic pregnancy. ...
FDA has identified 116 cases documenting that the patient received a blood transfusion due to heavy bleeding after medical abortion. ...
FDA is aware of 12 deaths possibly involving the use of mifepristone [RU-486] in women. Nine of these deaths were in the U.S.
Now a Planned Parenthood official has announced plans to make RU-486 abortions widely available in the U.S. by computer teleconference. The "telemed" system allows doctors sometimes hundreds of miles from a patient to prescribe medications via a Skype-type computer arrangement. Reported Iowa Public Radio on May 21:
[Planned Parenthood of East Central Iowa] Director of Patient Services Barbara Chadwick says it's the goal of Planned Parenthood to expand abortion services at its clinics nationwide over the next five years. ...
"We have been looking at initiating abortion service as a core service of all Planned Parenthoods, part of the Federation's strategic plan for 2015."
Medical abortions, Chadwick says, will be a key element in that strategy, and signing up for the long-distance option will get her organization toward the goal faster. ...
It turns out PPECI has been committing telemed abortions for two years, the rationale being "lack [of] full-time physicians on staff," per Chadwick, and to increase access to abortion, "particularly for women in rural areas," said Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards in a May 20 interview with the Iowa Independent.
Robin Marty at RH Reality Check promoted telemed abortions as a welcome alternative to "forc[ing] [women] to travel hours or set aside days in order to obtain the drug."
The ACLU promotes RU-486 abortions because they provide "abortion options for women who live far from a surgical abortion provider. ... In 86 percent of counties in the country, there is no abortion provider ... [sometimes] leaving women to travel hundreds of miles for care."
On the flip side this means women taking RU-486 for abortions are "far from" the abortion provider's help, sometimes "hours," sometimes "hundreds of miles."
Which means local clinics and hospitals have been and will be forced to mop up Planned Parenthood's RU-486 complications. In fact, Planned Parenthood recommends this on its website:
Rarely, women need vacuum aspiration or hospitalization. Take your medication guide with you if you need to visit an emergency room, a hospital, or a health-care provider.
"Vacuum aspiration" is code for surgical abortion.
Planned Parenthood admits three to four of every 100 RU-486 abortions fail:
Complete abortion will occur in 96-97 percent of women who choose mifepristone. In the small percentage of cases that medication abortion fails, other abortion procedures are required to end the pregnancies.
This means in rural areas where Planned Parenthood commits telemed RU-486 abortions, its sole emergency fallback plan is forcing local Catholic or Christian hospitals and/or medical staff to complete its abortions.
Planned Parenthood's solution to its shortage of abortionists and surgical suites is us.