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Route of Misoprostol Administration: Examining Efficacy, Side Effects and Acceptability

To date, the large body of high-quality scientific work on misoprostol for women’s health has not systematically addressed the importance of route of administration. Often, the use of misoprostol for women’s health indications follows untested practices with different routes of administration. Clinical research comparing different routes of administration for some indications is relatively scarce. Consequently, assertions about the “best” route of administration for a particular indication are often not grounded in scientific evidence. Moreover, many comparisons do not take into account either the population or provider effect on the efficacy or acceptability of a given route. As a result, experts at a previous meeting entitled “Misoprostol: An emerging technology for women’s health” held at the Population Council in New York in May 2001 identified the need for consensus on the clinical importance of route and an examination of the implications of route for future research and drug development. This report describes the outcomes of a subsequent meeting on this issue organized in 2003.

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