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Ru-486 Essay, Research Paper

Although RU-486 is a relatively new term being used in the UnitedStates, it

is not however in countries in Europe. RU-486 is a pill that istaken during

pregnancy to abort a baby. There have been many attempts to try tolegalize

this pill but many times of trying have led to dead-ends. I believethat the

abortion pill RU-486 should become the first abortion method used inthe

United States. In the following paper I plan to prove to you why you

shouldagree that RU-486 is a good abortion method to use.

RU-486: Not Just For Abortion

A major assumption that most people believe is that RU-486 is only usedfor

the abortion method. But they do not realize that RU-486 is “apotential

treatment for other diseases such as breast cancer, endometriosis,meningioma,

and Cushing’s syndrome” (Chin RU-486: Mifepristone). With theability of

having this drug legalized in the United States we could beconquering

important health problems that have not been cured yet. Without

thelegalization, we may never know if we could have cured many disease’s and

savedmany lives.

Accordingto Long, “…will probably not be effective in getting RU-486

approved inthe United States–because first and foremost this drug is

associated withabortion.” Since people automatically think that RU-486

is only used forabortions they will never accept it or allow it to get into

the United States.Maybe if these pro-life supporters were more aware of the

other possibilitiesand open their eyes, then maybe RU-486 would become

legalized. Everyone thatdoes not agree that RU-486 should become legalized is

only one-sided. The kindof people that disagree, in my opinion, never want to

hear something good aboutsomething new because they never want to be proven

wrong. Anything new isobviously going to have problems with it, I realize

that. But without theproper studies and legalization how can our doctors in

the United States learnwhat these problems are. The United States government

is not going to justlegaliz! e RU-486 without doing studies about it first. If

they just threw thedrug into the market and hoped it would succeed then they

may have thousands oflawsuits on their hands.

Too Easy, Too Fast?

Most people do not believe RU-486 should be the first option ofabortion

because it is too easy and fast. They think that you just”pop” a

pill, no questions asked and it is over and done with. Well,it is more

complex than that. According to Chin, “If the patient opts foran

abortion, she must then wait, by law, for a period of 8 days before

anyprocedure is performed. This is called the reflection period”

(FrenchClinical Experience). As stated in this quote a person has to decide

for aperiod of time before they can follow through with an abortion. As

withsurgical abortion, taking RU-486 would follow the same laws. I do

believehowever with either of the techniques used that counseling should be

providedto guide the women in the direction which she would like to pursue to

have anabortion.

As statedin my last paragraph, taking RU-486 is very complex, but I believe

that itcould become to easy if the drug is not legalized. Like any other drug

that isnot legalized, such as cocaine or marijuana, people can still obtain

drugs ifthey really want it. And in my opinion, in most cases people abuse

these drugsthat are not legalized. However if RU-486 became legalized and

people were ableto get it by law then there will less problems of abuse

because the governmentcould monitor the distribution. As Long states, &

quot;In France, Roussel-Uclafhas kept such tight control over the pills that

every single one released to ahospital or clinic is numbered.” I believe

that if this same technique wasdone in the United States then we could

monitor it and keep RU-486 undercontrol.


An important aspect of RU-486 that is constantly addressed by bothpro-life

and pro-choice supporters is the side-effects of the use of RU-486.Many of

these side effects include nausea, bleeding, cramps, diarrhea,headaches, and

chills. But these side effects can be just as serious as thosewhen using the

surgical abortion method. Although they may vary some, RU-486 isa cleaner and

easier way to have an abortion. To the people that think RU-486has bad

side-effects, do you not think that surgical abortion does not have anyto be

aware of? If some person has any kind of operation they are going to

haveside-effects even if everything goes smoothly. If people do not believe

thisthey can ask anyone who has been through a surgery.

Of thefirst fifty thousand cases in France there have been two complications,

one dueto smoking and the other due to psychological stress (Long). I think

that thesetwo cases are very unfortunate but they were both older women and

not healthy.I do not think that they should have been using the drug anyway.

When RU-486becomes legalized in the United States there has to be tight

control. I thinkthat they should take a stress test, go through a physical,

put a maximum agelimit for using the drug, and sign a form stating that they

are fullyresponsible for any complications or problems. If a person fails one

or more ofthese three things then they should be ineligible for usage of



Once a women gets the opportunity of using RU-486, the process isfairly

simple. The patient waits at the clinic for 2 hours after taking 3pills.

There is a required wait in case the person becomes sick. The patientreturns

to the clinic 2 days later to be medicated with a

contraction-inducingprostaglandin. The patient then can wait in the clinic or

go home for theabortion to occur, which takes approximately 4 hours. Then the

patient isadvised to come back to the clinic 8-10 days later (Chin). An

assumption thatis thought by many is that when a woman takes this drug that

it will not workand will make the baby deformed and retarded or the abortion

will not work atall. But as Right to Life states, “For about 5% of the

women using theRU-486/prostaglandin technique, the abortion fails to occur.

These women mustthen have a surgical abortion ” (RU-486: The Abortion

Pill). Althoughthere is a 5% chance that RU-486 may! not work. There is a

better chance ofeffectiveness if the drug is used sooner after unprotected

sex. As Grimesstates, Two randomized controlled trials sponsored by the World

HealthOrganization, published int eh fall of 1992, showed that a single 600

mg. dosetaken within 72 hours of unprotected coitus was highly effective.

Indeed, inthe two trials, a total of about 600 women received this regimen,

and nonebecame pregnant. Although there is a 100% effectiveness in these two

trials Ido not agree with the idea of taking RU-486 so soon. I believe that

if a womantook the drug that soon after becoming pregnant then she has not

had time tothink everything through completely.

Moral Right?

When a person has to visit an abortion clinic, they are the majority ofthe

time bombarded with pro-life protesters outside the doors of the clinic.

Sowhen a woman would get the choice of deciding to have the surgical method

orthe “pill” method don’t you think that most women would

chooseRU-486? The woman is allowed to do most of the process while in the

privacy ofher own home. There is no pressure from outside sources to make her

change hermind. Yet they will not legalize it. “…they can’t just say

this drug isgood because it prevents a woman from the embarrassment and

anxiety of goinginto an abortion clinic”(Dhall). This way pro-life

supporters are happythat it has not become legalized because they would be

loosing an importantbattle. The pro-life supporters battle is outside of the

abortion clinics,their last hope of changing the mind of some women. If

pro-life supporters cannot prevent ! the legalization of RU-486 then they will

loose this major battlethey would not have much of a fight anymore because

protesting at abortionclinics is one of their loudest voices to be heard.

I am nottrying to push you into the decision of legalizing RU-486 but I do

want you tothink about the possibilities of the drug before ignoring it

altogether. Thereare some good aspects to this drug but without the

legalization then these goodthings will never be experienced in the United

States. I do believe that thereshould be regulation and careful watch over

RU-486, because if it is notwatched then this drug will be one of the many

that is abused in our society.

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