What’s the Difference?

The abortion pill and Plan B are often thought of as being the same, but there are very few similarities between the two. Understanding the differences will help you make the best decision for your body and your health.

The Abortion Pill (RU-486)

The abortion pill, also known as a medical abortion or RU-486, is a medical termination of pregnancy. There are two doses of medication involved in order to end pregnancy, and both must be prescribed by a doctor. The first dose blocks an important hormone from sustaining pregnancy. The second dose begins contractions and expels the contents of the uterus. It is a method of abortion that can be used only to end an early pregnancy.

Plan B Emergency Contraception

Plan B emergency contraception does not cause an abortion to occur. Often known as the morning-after pill, Plan B must be taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex or failed contraception in order to be effective. It is available over the counter at most pharmacies. If you are already pregnant and take Plan B, it will not terminate or harm your pregnancy.

Why do people confuse the two?

The confusion begins with a misconception of what emergency contraception is. Plan B, as well as other brands of this product, lowers the chances of becoming pregnant either by delaying or entirely preventing ovulation, or by inhibited sperm movement. Research has shown that Plan B does not mess with the implantation of a fertilized egg, but rather, prevents fertilization from ever occurring. Preventing the implantation of a fertilized egg can be considered an abortion, but because Plan B does not cause this, it is not abortive.

Understanding the differences between the abortion pill and Plan B can help you make the best decision about next steps to take. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact Ray of Hope today.