The Male Contraceptive Pill Draws Ever Closer

We’ve been waiting for ages and now it would seem that the male contraception pill might finally be ready to hit the market – in a few years time. Which is better than before, when there weren’t any contraception pills being developed for men. Compared to female contraception pills, male versions won’t contain hormones.

Vasalgel is a non-hormonal male contraceptive owned by the medical research organization the Parsemus Foundation. It might be the first FDA approved male contraception since the condom. And according to research at least half of men would use it. Just one injection would last for years. Vasalgel, which is essentially a polymer, will be injected into a man’s sperm-carrying tubes and works by blocking sperm from doing what sperm does. Don’t worry, it’ll all be carried out under a local anesthetic and you will be injected through the scrotum – and not the penis or testicles – and should you change your mind another injection will reverse the injection by dissolving the polymer.

But FYI, medical trials on Vasalgel will only begin in 2016, and then we’ll know for sure whether it’s fully reversible. But still I’m sure it won’t hit the market until it is fully tested, so no worries there, gentlemen.

Besides there are other versions of male contraception being tested right now; Gendarussa prevents a sperm’s ability to fertilize an egg; an anti-Eppin agent targets a sperm’s ability to swim. However both these methods require men actually taking pills daily – like many women do. As much as I’d like to say that’s easy, by experience alone I know that many-a-times we forget to do so, which can compromise the efficiency of the contraceptive. So a method where you get an injection and then forget about it is probably the best and easiest bet.

Now we come to the interesting bit. The arrival of male contraceptives is going to change everything. And if you think that men won’t want to use it, then tell that to the millions of men around the world getting vasectomies every year. At least this method is noninvasive and is not intended to be permanent.

From a woman’s point of view, being able to share the responsibility of when we become parents is a big deal. And while two people taking contraceptive measures is better than one, if for one minute I don’t have to take my hormone-filled pill and have my partner take measures to prevent pregnancy instead, it would be awesome. My pills have caused me to be bloated, moody, gain weight, etc. Since men’s pills don’t have any hormones, having him on the ‘pill’ would be great.

As for men, knowing that you can have sex with your partner without a condom and not have to worry about getting pregnant must come as a great relief too. Although just to be clear, just like female contraceptives, male ones don’t prevent STI’s. Just pregnancies.

So it still might be a few years yet, but I’m pretty sure once it arrives, it will allow for greater family planning, and hopefully less unwanted babies.

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