The abortion pills will still terminate the pregnancy in most cases, but the risk of complications is higher after 12 weeks of pregnancy. It is therefore not recommended to use abortion pills at home beyond 12 weeks of pregnancy.
Studies that have looked at the proportion of women who needed medical assistance after using abortion pills have produced the following data:
Length of pregnancy and % who needed further medical care:
0-49 days (0-7 weeks): 2 %
40-63 days (7-9 weeks): 2.5%
64-70 days (9-10 weeks): 2.7%
71-77 days (10-11 weeks): 3.3%
77-84 days (11-12 weeks): 5.1%
85-91 days (12-13 weeks): 8%
As can be seen from this data, beyond 12 weeks of pregnancy the risk of needing medical assistance after using abortion pills increases to at least 8%. For this reason, if abortion pills are used beyond 12 weeks of pregnancy, the woman should be monitored in a clinic or hospital during the abortion.
Medical abortion after 12 weeks of pregnancy is still a safer option than resorting to unsafe methods to induce an abortion, such as inserting sharp objects into the vagina, ingesting toxic chemicals such as bleach or causing trauma by punching the abdomen. If you do use abortion pills after 12 weeks of pregnancy, make sure you have someone with you and be prepared to go to hospital once the miscarriage starts.