My Experience with Misoprostol (Cytotec)

When I went to my OB appointment following my recent miscarriage, my uterus was empty aside from some lining and some clotting but my doctor still prescribed me oral Misoprostol (Cytotec).

Although my body will expel everything all in due time, I believe the main concern comes from not expelling the remnants quick enough and becoming septic, causing an infection. After long thought, research, and discussion with my husband and even though the human body is a well oiled machine and knows what needs to be done, the fear of infection which could potentially lead to sterility consumed our thoughts and ultimately led me to  the decide to take this medication. It was obviously prescribed for a reason.

I immediately turned to Google to find the answers to all of my questions, most are still unanswered. My non-expert conclusion: This medication reacts differently with everyone. It’s worrisome especially because this medication is prescribed (or at least with me it was) with a narcotic pain medication and a strong anti-inflammatory. My mind automatically goes “holy shit, this is going to suck.” Yesterday, on my way home from the doctor, I experienced some pretty heavy cramps and passed large(r) clots when I got home. The cramping has stopped, but I thought I was going to throw up from that pain, so I was really dreading this.

Emotionally, it’s really hard to take a pill that is prescribed for abortions, to induce labor, and to essentially finish or start a miscarriage. I know I am no longer pregnant, I passed the placenta, baby, and other “products of conception.” But this is it. This finishes and finalizes the physical aspect of losing our baby.

The medication states it can take up to 4-6 hours to go into effect and the strong effects should subside within 12 hours. It is prescribed as “2 now and 1 every 6 hours thereafter until complete.” So I will be taking this medication from 11:45 am today until 11:45 pm tomorrow, every 6 hours for one entire day.

A few bits of advice given to me by my doctor:

1. Do not be alone while taking this medication. This was recommended by my doctor as the amount of bleeding can cause dizziness and the potential pain can be debilitating.

2. Take the medication early so given the medications “typical timeline,” the majority of symptoms will be completed prior to bed.

3. Stay on top of the pain with pain medicine. Do not wait until your cramps are painful to take a pill. It’s way easier to stay ahead of the pain than it is to get rid of it once it sets in.

4. Invest in some nice, thick long pads. I have been using Poise Overnight Long Length Pads since my miscarriage. These are the best. I have tried Always Nighttime Pads and have experience numerous leaks over the sides. The Poise pads are long, thick, and super absorbent. I have not had one single instance of leaking. They have leak lock sides to prevent leaking during the day and at night. They’re not cheap, but they’re worth every cent. I believe they’re around $25 for 60 of them at WalMart. Here is my experience:

September 13th:

11:45am – Took my first two prescribed Cytotec pills, 1-800mg Ibuprofen and 1 Percocet
12:45pm – No pain
1:45pm – Eensey weensey back cramp comparable to PMS symptoms before starting a period
2:45pm – Back cramp subsided, still nothing
3:34pm – Stomach cramps that resembled hunger pains. Uterine wise, nothing.
4:45pm -Stomach cramps remain, nothing.
5:45pm – Took my second dose of Cytotec and 1 Percocet (just in case). This has been pretty uneventful thus far.
8:24pm – Still nothing. I’m so confused.
11:17pm – Still nothing. I’m remembering the cramping and passage of clots and tissues yesterday and very early today and wondering if my uterus is already cleared out therefore the medicine has nothing to do.

September 14th:

9:30am – I’ve taken my 4th dose of Cytotec and still nothing.

12:34pm – Slight cramping resembling a period. Nothing crazy.

3:45pm – No cramping. Passed a few small clot, but not even really bleeding.

Took two more doses this day. All in all, it was pretty uneventful. No real pain, no crazy bleeding, and well, not at all what I expected. I’m sure everyone’s experiences will be different. So really, I’m sort of confused by the whole process. I was expecting labor pains, crime scene bleeding, and debilitating symptoms but luckily, I snuck by with some hunger pains and a cramp or two. I will be following up with my OB just to ensure my uterus is clearer.

If you have your own experience with this medication, please comment and let me and others know how it went for you.

– Kirstyn

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3 thoughts on “My Experience with Misoprostol (Cytotec)

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