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New Types of Male Contraception to be Available in the Near Future

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September 8, 2015

Three types of hormone pills, vaginal ring, diaphragm, intrauterine device, a hormone patch, upper arm hormone implant, and emergency contraceptive are all types of commonly used birth control methods used by uterus owners. All of these choices come with significant risk of side effects whether it be weight gain, blood clots, lowered libido, or even depression and liver problems.

Besides condoms or a vasectomy, men today have virtually no responsibility when it comes to birth control. However, a recent study by the Kaiser Family Foundation has found that a majority of cisgender men are willing to take on some more responsibility outside of the options available today. Thankfully, more methods are expected to pass FDA testing soon that will even out the number of options available to all:

Vasalgel (RISUG)

This method is likely to be the first in the US to make it out of FDA trials. It is basically a liquid vasectomy. A shot is administered to the scrotum and creates a gel that prevents sperm flow; it lasts for 10+ years and only takes a flush of a water/baking soda mixture to reverse.

Implant

An implant like the progestin version is under development that would be inserted in a person’s arm that releases a steroid that resembles testosterone and has no effect on muscle mass or bone density. This would need to be replaced annually.

Pills

There are various pill options that in development as well. One has been under development since 2001 by a professor at the University of Kansas Medical Center (Woot Kansas pride, but I digress) and a chemist at University of Minnesota that has proven a 100% effectiveness rate in rats and is reversible within 10 weeks after quitting the pill.

Another pill, wittingly called the “Clean Sheets Pill,” prevents ejaculation and is also being studied for its possible use to prevent HIV/AIDs.

 

With these new methods, as with any change in long standing practices, it is likely we will see some kind of stigma or resistance against equal responsibility of birth control, but this can be fought if activists constantly work at raising awareness for these new methods. Fighting the stigma before these methods are even on the market is a good place to start.

 

Photo by Ceridwen via Wikimedia Commons

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