The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports the abortion pill — mifepristone or mifeprex — remains the most common method for terminating a pregnancy in the United States.
From the CDC report published Wednesday, roughly 51% of abortions from 2020 were performed with the pill — at or before the ninth week of a woman's pregnancy.
Also, the report acknowledged the acquisition rate of abortion pills had increased by 22% from 2019 to 2020, a timeline which includes the shutdown period of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This week's CDC study predates the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade in late June. Since then, though, mifepristone has garnered even more national attention, suggesting the CDC's subsequent studies for 2021 and 2022 could provide a greater disparity of the abortion pill's popularity among women.
To back up that projection, CDC data reports that abortion-pill usage increased by a whopping 154% from 2011 to 2020.
According to CNBC, 12 states have already outlawed abortion. Banning the pill, however, represents a greater difficulty, since it's reportedly easy to obtain.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suspended the requirement of women obtaining mifepristone in person, paving the way for more by-mail purchases; and in December 2021, the agency made that change permanent.
Last week, pro-life advocates requested that a federal court in Texas overturn the FDA's approval of mifepristone. The attorneys representing the anti-abortion groups hail from the Alliance Defending Freedom, an organization involved in the landmark Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization case, which led to the reversal on Roe v. Wade.
Also last week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and eight other Democrat senators reportedly implored the FDA to expand access to mifepristone by approving its use for miscarriage management.
According to the FDA, the combination of mifepristone and the tablet misoprostol have garnered approval for attempting to terminate pregnancies before the 10th week.
Within that process, mifepristone prevents the pregnancy from continuing and misoprostol causes contractions that empty the uterus, CNBC reports.
The mifepristone-misoprostol combination reportedly has an efficacy rate of 96% to 98%.
As a consequence to mifepristone's rising popularity, the CDC says that less than 630,000 abortions were performed in the U.S. in 2020 — a 15% decrease from 2011.
Within that figure, the CDC reports that 93% of abortions took place at or before the 13th week of pregnancy, and 80% of abortions were handled at or before the ninth week.
Within this week's CDC study, "surgical abortions" rate as the second-most common method to ending a pregnancy.
The agency reports that approximately 40% of all abortions were performed with surgical procedures at or before the 13th week of pregnancy.
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