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Male Birth Control Pills Declared Safe. Maybe Now We Can Stop Placing Onus Of Contraception On Women?

Male Birth Control Pills Declared Safe. Maybe Now We Can Stop Placing Onus Of Contraception On Women?

New research declares that the pill will have minimum side effects. It will reduce sperm count without affecting sex drive.

Scientists have created a new birth control pill for men. Research suggests that these pills will have very few side effects. Researchers deem the drug to be safe after testing it on a group of men. Currently, there are no pharmaceutical birth control pills for men in the market. Although it is a major milestone for researchers and doctors, the drug is most likely to be available in markets only after a decade. The pill is the second promising contraceptive for men that is in the works. Both are said to be following the steps of a birth control gel that is currently in clinical trials. The research was conducted at the University of Washington and Los Angeles Biomed Institute. Researchers report that the drug reduces the production of the hormone that is required for the production of sperm. They add that the usage of this drug does not reduce one's sex drive.

So far, men have only two options when it comes to participating in pregnancy prevention. The first being a vasectomy, which is a surgical procedure that blocks the sperm from entering the semen. This procedure has long-term effects. The second option is the usage of condoms, which is considered largely safe, easy to use, and effective in not just preventing pregnancies but also the transmission of Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STIs). However, women, on the other hand, have lots of options when it comes to birth control. But most of them have a lot of side effects which is far from being painless. Almost all forms disrupt their hormonal balance. This leads to physical, mental and emotional imbalance, and disrupts the functionality of everyday life for women.



 

When it comes to birth control in women, long-lasting methods such as the insertion of the coil can be very painful and uncomfortable. Birth control pills cause hormonal imbalance. These pills can also result in nausea and weight gain. Hence, male birth control is something the world has been waiting for, for a very long time now. It is much anticipated and hoped for by both men who want contraception to be in their control and women who do not want to bear sole responsibility of contraception.



 

Development of male birth control gained momentum only in the past few years. The first form of male birth control in the making was a gel that needed to be rubbed on the man's back and shoulders. It is the front runner of the two trials and scientists say that the product should be out in the market by the year 2022. However, the pill that is being developed is said to be far more effective. The drug is currently known as 11-beta-MNTDC (pharma companies will surely come up with a simpler name). 

The 11-beta-MNTDC is a synthetic form of testosterone that can diminish sperm production in the testes without affecting normal testosterone levels in the rest of the body. It acts both on male hormones, called androgens, and on progesterone, a hormone produced in women's ovaries to facilitate pregnancy and by the male endocrine system to produce testosterone. The tests were conducted on a group of 40 men. 10 of these men were given placebos while the rest were given the actual drug.



 

The drug appeared capable of reducing hormone production down to levels of someone who is androgen deficient. The men were required to take a dosage of 200 to 400mg with food for 28 days in a row. At the end of the study period, none of the subjects had quit using the drug. Some of the men reported mild side effects like headaches, fatigue, or acne. Although all the men maintained their sex lives as usual, five of the men reported that their libidos were lower. The levels of their hormones seemed to have dropped significantly.



 



 

However, researchers suggested that it would take somewhere between 60 to 90 days for the sperm count to decrease. Men's testes make 1,500 sperm a second which is the reason behind why the pill takes that long to be completely effective. It also the same reason male contraceptive pills have not been developed sooner. Researchers are not yet sure that the drug works but are confident about the drug being safe. The drug's effect so far has apparently been very promising. Its development follows the same company's safety testing of another pill for men. 



 

Dr. Stephanie Page, a professor of medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, told The Daily Mail, "The goal is to find the compound that has the fewest side effects and is the most effective." Regardless of whether the pills prove themselves, researchers say that it will take a few years until they will be available in the market. The next stages of the drug approval process will take a couple of years. The FDA's assessment of the drug will take another two years, which means that they will be available to the public only within the next five to six years. Well, it better late than never, right?

Disclaimer : This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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