An anti-choice doctor in the United States has been using flimsy evidence and experimenting unethically on women in order to supposedly “reverse” a medical abortion. Dr. George Delgado is a family medicine physician who founded the organization “Abortion Pill Reversal”. Capitalizing on the anti-choice myth that women regret their abortions, he claims that a woman who has taken the first dose of the abortion pill can undo the process by taking large doses of progesterone. This is an unproven medical treatment.
Medical abortion is the use of drugs rather than surgery to end a pregnancy. The regimen includes a combination of two drugs — mifepristone, taken first, and misoprostol, taken at a later point. Mifepristone stops the pregnancy growth by blocking the hormone progesterone; misoprostol makes the uterus contract to complete the abortion. Medical abortion is more effective when both drugs are used because mifepristone alone will not always cause abortion. In fact, as many as half of women who take only mifepristone continue their pregnancies.
This is the key to why the experimental treatment is unproven – a large percentage of women will continue their pregnancy simply by not taking the second pill, and Dr. Delgado has failed to distinguish this from his claimed “success” rate. Expert Dr. Daniel Grossman has said: “There is no evidence that any kind of treatment reverses or stops the effect of the abortion pill.” Dr. Grossman has also pointed to major methodological flaws in the only real actual on the topic (by Dr. Delgado). “The study is just not designed in a way that would be useful to determine if this is effective or not.” Dr. Hal Lawrence, the head of American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said regarding Delgado’s study: “It is poorly designed and falls far short of providing sufficient evidence to recommend this course of treatment.” He said the study “does not meet clinical or methodological standards.”
American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists – Facts Are Important: Medication Abortion “Reversal” Is Not Supported by Science, August 2017
Vice.com – Medical community slams study pushing “abortion reversal” procedure. April 2018
Huffington Post – Proponents Of ‘Abortion Reversal’ Feel Vindicated By A New Study. They Shouldn’t. April 2018
American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology – Medical abortion reversal: science and politics meet. March 2018