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is the abortion pill safer than tylenol blog header

If you’re considering taking Plan C, also called the Medication Abortion Pill or RU486, you may have seen the claim that it is safer than taking Tylenol.

You may have wondered—can that be true? We looked into it as a medical clinic that cares about your health.

And the answer? In short: No.

Reason #1: There are a larger number of people with adverse effects from Tylenol because more people take Tylenol

Tylenol is taken much more frequently than the abortion pill for a variety of reasons, with nearly 3.2 billion doses of acetaminophen (the main ingredient in Tylenol) taken in the United States each year. Tylenol was associated with (1) 56,000 emergency room visits, 2,600 hospitalizations, and 500 deaths. 

Due to differing reporting requirements in each state and the availability of the abortion pill online, we can’t know exactly how many medication abortion pills are sold each year. However, during a study in 2020 (2), a sample size of 1,157 yielded the result of 70 visits to urgent care or emergency rooms, and ten serious complications were recorded.

Reason #2: The comparison between mifepristone and acetaminophen is not an equal one

Emergency room visits and hospitalizations due to acetaminophen are due to people improperly taking more of the medication than directed on the bottle. Roughly 50% of patients who were hospitalized due to Tylenol overdosed on purpose (3).

In comparison, the individuals who sought Urgent or ER care had taken the medication abortion pills as directed (not an overdose), and they were working as intended (not a side effect of an overdose) (4).

Reason #3: Patients should evaluate percentage rather than volume to determine risk

When assessing the risks of taking a medication, it’s crucial to consider the percentage of negative outcomes rather than the actual number

The two studies mentioned above didn’t involve the same number of patients. Percentage-wise, the numbers show that .002% of Tylenol users who abused the medication went to the emergency room. In contrast, 6% of medication abortion users who took the medications as directed went to the emergency room.

What does this mean?

Data shows that the percentage of patients who have complications following the abortion pill regimen is higher than that of those who take Tylenol. This indicates that the abortion pill regimen is not safer than Tylenol. If you’re considering an abortion, it’s important to be informed about the potential risks as well as what to expect after you have taken the medication

Take Care of You

While it is not mandatory to have a pre-abortion screening before a medication abortion, opting for one is a responsible choice for your health. It can give you greater peace of mind and ensure you have all the necessary information to make the best decision for you.

During your appointment at Alpha Center, you will learn the following:

  1. If you are truly pregnant and if the pregnancy test has been taken at the right time (5).
  2. If your pregnancy is viable. Nearly 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage. If your pregnancy isn’t viable, an abortion isn’t needed.
  3. If your pregnancy is potentially ectopic. Nearly 1 in 50 pregnancies are ectopic, and these need to be treated by a physician (6). A medication abortion does not treat ectopic pregnancy.
  4. If you have an STD. Untreated Chlamydia at the time of an abortion can lead to pelvic infection between 10-60% of the time. Because many cases of Chlamydia present no symptoms, it’s important to be tested and treated before having an abortion (7).
  5. The side effects and potential risks of both medication and surgical abortion.

Call us at 970.239.2292 or request an appointment on our website, and our scheduler will contact you! All of our services are free, and no insurance is necessary.


  1. National Library of Medicine
  3. National Library of Medicine
  5. National Library of Medicine
  6. Obstetrics & Gynecology
  7. World Health Organization

Alpha Center does not provide or refer for abortions, and a referral is not needed to obtain an abortion. Alpha Center provides all services at no cost to our patients, which means we have no financial interest in your pregnancy decision.

Written by Kristen Long for Alpha Center, last updated May 2024.

Terrestrial Trajectory
Terrestrial Trajectory
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I've have been seen by the alpha center for about 9 years now, and I cannot thank them enough. I've built great trust with them and have had endless heartfelt and deep conversations with almost everyone there. This is a Christian organization and I am not Christian, that seems to be an issue for some people who have written reviews here. While I don't share the specific faith they do, I have only ever been treated with kindness, respect and love from the staff. They are truly great ambassadors of their religion, Coloradans, and the planet.
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I had such a good experience visiting Alpha Center. The nurses were extremely informative and happy to take the time to discuss any questions you might have. They were also the most patient individuals I have ever encountered when having blood drawn (I hate needles.) I would recommend them to anyone and everyone. Such a solid experience!
Misfit Music
Misfit Music
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The Alpha Center puts quality and their patients first. They make sure you are comfortable and in a safe environment to discuss any problems you may be having in your life. I would recommend 100%.