1 Maternity Research Center, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran.

2 Research Committee of Students, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran.

3 Biostatistics Department, Social Development and Health Promotion Research Center, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran.


The current study was designed to compare the effectiveness and side effects of oral, vaginal, and sublingual misoprostol in termination of second-trimester pregnancy.
Materials and Methods: In this clinical trial (2014 to 2015), 85 pregnant women in the second trimester of pregnancy were included in Imam Reza hospital, Kermanshah, Iran. They were randomly divided into three groups as follows: oral misoprostol (n=28), vaginal misoprostol (n=30), and sublingual misoprostol (n=27). Misoprostol was administered orally (oral misoprostol group), vaginally (vaginal misoprostol group), or sublingually (sublingual misoprostol group). The dosage was similar in three groups (400 micrograms every four hours up to a maximum of five doses). The mothers were followed and induction-abortion interval time, number of dosages required, and misoprostol side effects were documented. The data were analyzed by SPSS version 20.0 software.
Results: The mean (standard deviation) age of the sample was 28.27 (±4.97) years. Mean gestational age was 16.58 weeks and mean gravidity was 1.99. Mean number of administered misoprostol doses was 3.89 and most patients responded to three doses of misoprostol. Mean abortion time was 20.08 hours. No side effects were reported in 60% of the subjects. Others experienced side effects such as nausea (16.5%), fever and chills (12.9%), and vaginal bleeding (9.4%). The abortion duration in 35.3% of the subjects was within 18 hours. The most successful method was oral route (82.1%), followed by vaginal route (80%), and sublingual route (70.4%). The abortion duration was statistically different between the three groups (P= 0.001).
Conclusion: Finding of the presented study showed that misoprostol is a safe medication to be used for medical abortion in the second trimester of pregnancy. Oral route of administration was superior to vaginal or rectal use of misoprostol.