RU-486: Mistake for Women's Health

The abortion industry and its supporters routinely say that they are engaged in the battle to keep abortion legal in order to safeguard the health of women.  In fact, they say, if legal abortion is not available, thousands of women will die each year from “back alley abortions.”  

However, the recent controversy over the abortion pill RU-486 clearly shows that abortion advocates are not interested in protecting the health of our sisters and friends.  Instead, they are simply interested in protecting abortion—no matter what the cost.

You may not realize it, but eight women around the world have died after taking the abortion drug RU-486.  Abortion advocates claimed that RU-486 was a safe, “effective” way to end an unwanted pregnancy.  But nothing could be further from the truth.  If abortion backers are truly concerned about women’s health, why would they defend a pill that kills women?

While eight fatalities may sound like a low death count, the toll could climb significantly.  More than 800 women have experienced potentially life-threatening complications after using RU-486.  This is not a miracle drug.  This is a lethal drug.  It kills a baby and has the potential of killing his or her mother.  

Thankfully, some members of the U.S. government are prepared to do something about this potential health crisis.  Maryland Congressman Roscoe Bartlett was joined by more than a dozen members of Congress recently in an effort to suspend sales of RU-486.  Bartlett has introduced legislation known as Holly’s Law.  It’s named in honor of Holly Patterson, a California teenager who died after Planned Parenthood gave her a dose of RU-486.

A new study confirms our worst fears about RU-486.  The report, written by Dr. Donna J. Harrison and Dr. Margaret M. Gary, paints a grim portrait of the effects of the abortion drug on women.  The doctors analyzed FDA reports from Danco Laboratories, the manufacturer of RU-486.  The investigation showed that 237 women hemorrhaged after taking the abortion drug.  

Holly Patterson’s father, Monty, isn’t surprised.  He’s concerned that other teenagers will die as a result of taking the drug that killed his daughter.  As Monty Patterson stated in a report on, “How can we expect a teenager to figure out if she’s beyond the so-called normal side effects of an RU-486 abortion to serious adverse events?”

It is unconscionable that sales of RU-486 are allowed to continue in this country.  If Tylenol put out a tablet that killed women, the media would be demanding that the company immediately take the product of the shelves.  But, because this drug induces abortion, the mainstream media are largely silent on this issue.

For years, proponents of abortion have been hiding behind the old wives’ tale that abortion is good for women’s health.  Yet, the Elliot Institute, an organization which researches the after-effects of abortion, has found that abortion can be quite harmful for a woman’s overall well-being.  Abortions can cause sterility, hemorrhaging, and death.  They can wreak havoc on a woman’s psychological health, causing her to succumb to severe depression.  Women who have had abortions are far more likely to abuse alcohol and drugs and may actually die as a result of such actions.  In addition, post-abortive women are far more likely to commit suicide because they are often unable to live with the guilt that comes when an unborn child is deliberately killed.  

The charade that surrounds abortion has got to end.  Pro-abortion advocates do a disservice to women when they try to promote abortion as some kind of safe alternative to childbirth.  Whether the abortion is surgical or chemical in nature, it is still dangerous—for both mother and child.  In addition, the news media need to start asking some serious questions about the damaging effect of abortion on women’s health.