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Feasibility of telephone follow-up after medical abortion.

This study assessed the feasibility of using telephone calls combined with high-sensitivity urine pregnancy testing for follow-up of women after medical abortion, with the aim of removing the need to return to the clinic for examination, unless signs of pregnancy were still present. 139 women in Pittsburgh, US, seeking an abortion up to nine weeks of pregnancy were enrolled to receive mifepristone 200 mg orally and misoprostol 800 mcg vaginally or buccally, as per their choice. They were initially contacted by phone one week after mifepristone administration and interviewed using a standardised questionnaire. If the woman or the clinician thought the pregnancy might be ongoing, she was asked to return for a scan. Otherwise, the woman did a home urine pregnancy test 30 days after taking the mifepristone and was phoned within three days of the test. Those with positive pregnancy tests were also asked to return for a scan. Those with negative tests required no further follow-up. Six women presented before the initial phone call was due with concerns about ongoing pregnancy. The other 133 women were all contacted initially by phone one week after taking the pills. Eight of these were asked to return for evaluation and all did so. Of the remaining 125 women, eight presented for an interim visit prior to the 30-days call. Of the 117 women phoned a second time after the pregnancy test, 116 were reached. Of these, 27 had a positive pregnancy test and two had inconclusive results, and all 29 were asked to return for follow-up. Three of the 29 did not return for follow-up; of the 26 who did, none had a gestational sac or a continuing pregnancy. Complete follow-up was achieved with 135 of the 139 women (97.1%), of whom 87 (63%) had no need to return to the clinic and three were lost to follow-up. This method seems to be a feasible alternative to requiring routine return to the clinic for follow-up after medical abortion. (1)

(1.) Perriera LK, Reeves MF, Chen BA, et al. Feasibility of telephone follow-up after medical abortion. Contraception 2010;81:143-49.

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Title Annotation:ROUND UP: Research
Publication:Reproductive Health Matters
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2010
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