Medicine: Abortion Without Surgery?

Common sense suggests that the safest way to induce an abortion is to use the hormone oxytocin, which nature produces when it is time for a fetus to leave the womb. But nature does not always abide by man's logic. Oxytocin in large doses can induce an abortion, but not until the 20th week of pregnancy. And most unwanted pregnancies should be ended no later than the 16th week. Until now this has required surgical intervention—scraping out the contents of the womb, which involves some risk of bleeding and infectious complications even in a...

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