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Obstet Gynecol. 2005 Feb;105(2):352-6.

Misoprostol for second-trimester pregnancy termination in women with a prior cesarean delivery.

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  • 1School of Women's and Infants' Health, The University of Western Australia, King Edward Memorial Hospital for Women, 374 Bagot Road, Subiaco, Perth, Western Australia 6008, Australia.



To evaluate the use of misoprostol in second-trimester abortion in women with prior cesarean deliveries.


A review of women with prior cesarean deliveries undergoing abortion at 14-28 weeks of gestation for a fetal anomaly over a 7.5-year period. Outcome data were compared with a contemporaneous cohort of women with unscarred uteri undergoing the same procedure. Misoprostol was used to induce abortion in all cases, and a variety of dosage regimens were used, the most frequent being 400 mug vaginally every 6 hours (71.3%).


During the study period, 720 consecutive women underwent a second-trimester abortion for a fetal anomaly using misoprostol. One hundred one women (14%) had at least 1 prior cesarean delivery: 78 women had 1, 19 women had 2, and 4 women had 3 prior cesarean deliveries. Women with a prior cesarean birth were significantly older (30 years [interquartile range 26-35] versus 33 years [29-37], no cesarean delivery versus cesarean delivery, P = < .001) and of increased parity. The median gestational age at delivery was 19.4 weeks (interquartile range 18-20.7) versus 19.3 weeks (17.7-21), no cesarean delivery versus cesarean delivery, P = .48. The presence of a prior uterine scar did not impact upon abortion duration (16.6 hours [12.1-23.8] versus 14.5 hours [11.4-21.4], no cesarean delivery versus cesarean delivery, P = .07). No differences in blood loss, major hemorrhage, or blood transfusion occurred. There was no case of uterine rupture or hysterectomy.


In second-trimester abortion, the use of misoprostol in women with prior cesarean delivery was not associated with an excess of complications compared with women with unscarred uteri.



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