March 2000

Is medical abortion acceptable to all American women?: The impact of sociodemographic characteristics on the acceptability of mifepristone-misoprostol abortion

Clark S, Ellertson C, Winikoff B. Is medical abortion acceptable to all American women?: The impact of sociodemographic characteristics on the acceptability of mifepristone-misoprostol abortion. Journal of the American Medical Women's Association. March 2000; 55(3):177-182.

OBJECTIVE: To determine whether mifepristone-misoprostol medical abortion is more acceptable to some American women than to others.

METHODS: Using previously reported acceptability data from a large US multicenter study (n = 2121), we conducted a more detailed analysis to test whether characteristics such as race/ethnicity, education, age, gestational age, and geographic location affect acceptability.

RESULTS: In the United States, Asian women were more than twice as likely as other women to choose this method because they believed it was safer, while white women were twice as likely to select it because they considered it more natural. More educated women were likely to select this method to show support for greater choice and were more pleased about being able to avoid surgery. Particular features of the protocol also appealed to different women. White and African-American women as well as women with more education would feel significantly more comfortable taking one or both of the drugs at home than they would in the clinic. Nearly all groups of women were equally satisfied with this method and found it highly acceptable. The data showed surprisingly few differences among women's overall satisfaction level, their willingness to choose the method again, or to recommend it to others.

CONCLUSION: Mifepristone-misoprostol medical abortion has widespread appeal to a broad range of women, but different women choose and prefer this method for different reasons.

Tagged with Abortion, United States