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FAQ: Is medication abortion the same as RU486?


Mifepristone was originally developed by the French pharmaceutical company Roussel Uclaf. This was the 38,486th compound  that the company created and the medication was soon referred to as RU-486. Mifepristone continues to be referred to by this name, particularly in the media. Mifepristone has different brand names in different countries. In the United States, mifepristone is often called by its brand name Mifeprex. In other countries, mifepristone is known by other brand names, including Mifegyne, Mifebort, and Termipil. Medabon is a combination package that includes both mifepristone and misoprostol.

However, mifepristone is only one of the medications that can be used to terminate an early pregnancy. Worldwide, three different regimens are used for medication abortion: mifepristone/misoprostolmethotrexate/misoprostol, and misoprostol alone. Misoprostol is often referred to by the brand name Cytotec.


If you have questions about medication abortion, please visit our frequently asked questions section.


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