RU-486

This essay has a total of 2208 words and 8 pages.

RU-486

Ethics 101
Stienfeld
Deliberation Brief

RU- 486

"Mifepristone, The French Abortion Pill, The "anti-pregnancy" pill, Mifeprex, Abortion by
Pill, RU- 486, ru486, mifegyne, M&M, RU-486, Miracle Pill, The Abortion Pill, non-surgical
abortion, the "easy" abortion, Makes-the-baby-go-away pill, Unpregnancy, Contragestion
Chemical Abortion, RU-28486, Medical Abortion, Mf." (RU486: The Pill, The Process, and The
Problems). Call if what you want, but on September 28, 2000 the Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) approved a drug known as RU-486, which will now be known by trade
name as Mifeprex. Basically, what this drug does is cease early pregnancy. A woman may
take this drug 49 days or less from the beginning of the last menstrual period. By using
this method, three steps need to be taken. The first step includes a dose of three 200
milligrams of Mifepristone orally. The next step occurs two days later taking two 200
micrograms of Misoprostol orally. After completing those two dosages the woman has to go
back to the doctor for a "follow-up" visit about 14 days later, to make sure that the
procedure was successful, and the pregnancy was indeed terminated. Even though the
procedure sounds easy, there are many set backs that make the drug not "the easy way" out.
A woman will experience about 9-16 days of bleeding or spotting, other side effects may be
nausea, diarrhea, vomiting and painful cramping. Unlike an abortion the procedure is
indeed a process, it isn't a wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am type of ordeal. There are very
serious and cautious steps a woman needs to take in order for the abortion pill to
complete itself.

Looking back at the history of RU-486, we need to take a trip to Europe back in 1980,
which is when it was invented. Years later it was approved in France in 1988, and
manufactured by a French industry called Roussel-Uclaf, hence the name RU. The 486 came
from the shortened version of the first compound number the pill had, or 38486. After the
drug started to spread throughout Europe, many other non-Europe countries such as Russia,
United Kingdom, China, Israel, and South Africa approved the pill as well. Although the
drug was becoming "popular" across seas, the United States delayed permission to allow the
drug. The main reason for this delay was that President George Bush was a strong pro-life
advocate, but that all changed in 1993 when President Bill Clinton came into office. In
1996, tests were being done with the FDA to approve the RU-486 pill. Four years later, of
course on September 28, 2000, the FDA did indeed approve the pill and it's use. Although
the pill is approved, minor details are still being put into place, for example the cost.
An article on the ABC news website says that the pill will possibly come out in November
and will cost about the same as a surgical abortion, so between $300-$550 (Associated
Press). Also, the drug will only be offered at the doctors' office, not the pharmacy. The
pill is expected to reduce the numbers of abortions by one third in the United States
(Associated Press). Overall, the approval of this drug is going to raise much awareness
and concern with the pro-life and pro-choice citizens of the United States.

Now, some say that this method isn't, and shouldn't be considered abortion. But, that
simply taking the RU-486 pill just brings upon a natural miscarriage. Dr. Bernard Gore,
who is in charge of one of seven RU-486 test sites in the country, agrees. He also says
that going with the decision of using the pill is a process. It's not just an hour and a
half session, and then everything is back to normal. "Dr. Gore, clinic medical director
and professor at the University of California-San Francisco, said, ‘The real advantage
to this whole concept is simplicity, effectiveness and a cheap price, but more
importantly, it's going to protect a patient from being targeted (by anti-abortion
protesters) at clinics.' Gore noted that 28 states do not have abortion providers and that
family-care practitioners can provide the RU-486 clone. The procedure is considered 96 to
98 percent effective and has been used by some 200,000 women in Europe and Asia worldwide"
(The San Francisco Examiner). Gore's point shows not only that this pill is simple,
effective, and cheap, but also it is in deep concern for woman's status and reputation.
Another argument why the RU-486 is efficient is because it is a known fact that abortion
around the country has become increasingly unpopular with all people including, doctors,
women, and the majority of the population. This method of abortion, or whatever anyone
calls it, is private and personal. Even though the woman needs to be ready for an
emergency and/or serious conditions, it still isn't very likely, considering the effective
percentage is extremely high. Plus, the women also have the choice to be around people
that she loves and care about her. Say that she is a teenager going though this with her
mother, or a couple going through this together. The point is that, although abortion
isn't always considered the right thing to do, the woman doesn't have to go through it
alone if she doesn't want to. Yes, she is going to be going through a lot of pain, but at
the same time she can feel the love that surrounds her.

According to The Potentiality Principle that Edward Langerak adopted in his article
titled, "Abortion: Listening to the Middle" suggested about abortion that, "If in the
normal course of (an embryo's) development, a being will acquire a person's claim to life,
then by virtue of that fact it already has some claim to life" (Langerak). In other words,
if in a pregnancy, a being has potentiality to become a person, then technically they are
a person, and no one has any rights to say anything about this person's being? Should this
theory pertain to those of the RU-486 drug? It would only make sense to combine theories
in the abortion method and the pill method of ceasing pregnancy. A woman who aborts her
baby is a killer and that if all beings have rights to live than why shouldn't babies
inside a mother's womb have any? Most radical pro-life advocates agree that this pill will
only bring upon trouble and controversy. Trouble, for example, a woman goes into the
doctor to get this pill, then two days later decides she isn't going to go through with
this anymore, for any reason. She doesn't take the second dosage of the next drug, nor
does she go into the doctor for her check up. At this time, what is it that the doctor's
do? Do they just sit there and think, "Oh, it's just another patient missing their
appointment." No way. This is a woman, out on the streets, or sitting in her home debating
to go through with the final steps of the process, and obviously unaware of the danger
Continues for 4 more pages >>




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