After almost two decades of birth control pill usage (doing double duty as a PCOS symptom controller and as birth control), I followed my doctor's advice and decided to switch to an IUD. Prior to my appointment next week, I had to fill a few prescriptions. One of them, I was surprised to discover, was misoprotol.* As I paid, he hesitated. "Are you pregnant?" he asked.

I started cracking up. "No," I said, "but if I was, this would certainly put an end to that, wouldn't it?"

The other two drugs I obtained, by the way, were a prescription strength pain killer and a Valium. He probably thought I should be on the Valium, stat.

*Along with mifepristone, this is commonly used as "the abortion pill," although it is 90% effective at early terminations when used alone.

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