With Roe vs Wade overturned, many New York women have been left with serious questions regarding abortion and their unexpected pregnancy options. If you’re feeling nervous or getting mixed answers, Pregnancy Help NYC is here to help!
In this post, we’ll be explaining what the overturn of Roe vs Wade means and how women facing unintended pregnancy can get the support they need!
What is Roe vs Wade?
Roe vs Wade is the 1973 lawsuit in which the U.S. Supreme Court established the constitutional right to abortion. This decision didn’t guarantee the absolute right to abortion, as states were allowed to create and enforce their own regulations. However, they couldn’t ban abortion entirely.
With Roe vs Wade now overturned, it’s up to the states to make the decision. Some states plan to restrict or ban abortion, while others plan to expand access.
What is Dobbs vs Jackson?
In March of 2018, the State of Mississippi passed the Gestational Age Act, which banned abortion beyond 15 weeks, with exceptions made for “severe fetal abnormalities” and other medical emergencies. Shortly after the act was passed, Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the only abortion clinic in Mississippi, sued state officials, claiming that the act was unconstitutional.
This case became known as Dobbs vs Jackson. In 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that abortion is not a constitutional right. This led to the overturning of Roe vs Wade and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey.
Is Abortion Legal in New York?
Abortion remains legal in New York. New York abortion law states that women can receive an abortion up to 24 weeks of pregnancy. However, abortion is still an option beyond 24 weeks if a qualified physician determines that the pregnancy would put the mother’s health at risk.
Currently, New York does not require women to receive an ultrasound prior to an abortion. However, we strongly recommend it! Ultrasounds can confirm pregnancy viability—meaning, the fetus’ ability to survive outside the womb.
If a heartbeat can’t be detected during an ultrasound, the pregnancy is not viable. Ultrasounds can also determine whether you’re having an ectopic pregnancy or are likely to miscarry. In any of these cases, abortion is not needed, and you can focus on getting the care and treatment you need! More on that in a moment.
Is Miscarriage Treatment the Same as Abortion? What About Ectopic Pregnancy?
Miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy treatment are not considered abortions. The difference is that abortion is the voluntary termination of a viable pregnancy. On the other hand, miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies are inviable and end on their own.
How Does Abortion Work?
There are two ways abortions are performed: surgical abortion (also known as Dilation & Curettage or D&C) and medical abortion (also known as the abortion pill).
MedlinePlus states that surgical abortions are performed by “dilating the opening to the uterus (cervix) and placing a small suction tube into the uterus”. The physician then uses a suction device to remove the fetus from the uterus.
The abortion pill consists of two medications: mifepristone and misoprostol. According to the Mayo Clinic, mifepristone cuts off “the supply of hormones that maintains the interior of the uterus”. Without these hormones, the pregnancy can’t progress. Misoprostol is taken next, causing the uterus to contract, bleed, and expel the contents of the uterus.
How are Miscarriages Treated?
There are three miscarriage treatment options. Depending on the severity of your condition, you can choose:
Expectant management. If you aren’t experiencing any symptoms of infection, you can allow the miscarriage to end naturally. Unfortunately, this process can last three to four weeks and can be incredibly draining. If the pregnancy tissue doesn’t pass on its own, you will need medical or surgical treatment to prevent an infection.
Medical treatment. If you’d prefer to expedite the miscarriage process, your doctor can prescribe misoprostol to help the uterus expel the pregnancy tissue sooner. For most women, this treatment works within 24 hours.
Surgical treatment. Dilation and Curettage (D&C) is another miscarriage treatment option. Any woman having a miscarriage can opt for this procedure, but it is necessary if they’re experiencing excessive bleeding and signs of infection.
Although misoprostol and D&C are also used in abortion, they are not considered abortion in the context of miscarriage, because the pregnancy is not viable. You can’t end a pregnancy that’s already ended naturally.
How are Ectopic Pregnancies Treated?
According to Cleveland Clinic, ectopic pregnancies are treated either by a medication called methotrexate or one of two laparoscopic surgeries, called salpingectomy and salpingostomy.
If the ectopic pregnancy is detected early enough, the doctor may recommend methotrexate, which is given by injection. Methotrexate stops the growth of the ectopic pregnancy and dissolves the remaining cells. It’s less invasive than surgery, but does require follow-up appointments to monitor your hCG levels and ensure the injection was successful.
In severe cases, surgery is needed to treat ectopic pregnancy. If your fallopian tube has ruptured, the surgeon will perform a salpingectomy, removing both the ectopic pregnancy and the fallopian tube. If your fallopian tube has not ruptured yet, the surgeon may perform a salpingostomy, removing the ectopic pregnancy and leaving the tube in place to heal.
If you think you might be experiencing a miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy, it’s crucial to get a diagnosis from a licensed medical professional and receive the appropriate care. Abortion is never needed to treat either condition!
How Does This Affect the Services Offered at Pregnancy Help NYC?
Our services will remain the same! We continue to offer unplanned pregnancy support to help women when they need it most. Our services include:
We can also help you get tested for STDs, if needed. All of our services are 100% confidential and free of charge! No matter where you’re at in your unexpected pregnancy journey, our team is here to provide the care you deserve.
Give us a call at (212) 243-7119 or schedule your appointment today!
Library of Congress. (n.d.). Roe v. Wade. Library of Congress. Retrieved from https://tile.loc.gov/storage-services/service/ll/usrep/usrep410/usrep410113/usrep410113.pdf
Mississippi Legislature. (n.d.). House Bill No. 1510. Mississippi Legislature. Retrieved from http://billstatus.ls.state.ms.us/documents/2018/pdf/HB/1500-1599/HB1510SG.pdf
Supreme Court of the United States. (n.d.). Dobbs v. Jackson. Supreme Court of the United States. Retrieved from https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/21pdf/19-1392_6j37.pdf
Library of Congress. (n.d.). Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey. Library of Congress. Retrieved from https://tile.loc.gov/storage-services/service/ll/usrep/usrep505/usrep505833/usrep505833.pdf
SECTION 2599-BB. NY State Senate. (2019, January 25). Retrieved from https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/laws/PBH/2599-BB
U.S. National Library of Medicine. (2020, December 2). Abortion – surgical. MedlinePlus. Retrieved from https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002912.htm
Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2022, June 1). Mifepristone (oral route) side effects. Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/mifepristone-oral-route/side-effects/drg-20067123?p=1
Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2021, October 16). Miscarriage. Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pregnancy-loss-miscarriage/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20354304
Ectopic pregnancy: Symptoms, causes, treatments & tests. Cleveland Clinic. (2020, February 6). Retrieved from https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/9687-ectopic-pregnancy