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More Birth Control Options for Men?

Men may soon have new options for safe and effective male contraceptives, such as a birth control pill, a patch, or an implant. According to MSNBC, researchers have had much success over the last five years with testing male hormonal contraceptives (MHC) and a daily pill could be available in five to seven years, with implants possibly arriving even sooner.

The University of Washington in Seattle has found that a male contraceptive that releases a certain amount of testosterone over a three month period has the potential to be a safe and dependable form of birth control. Like hormonal contraceptives for women, which prevent the body from releasing an egg, male hormonal contraceptives would prevent the production of sperm. Dr. Andrea Coviello, from the Population Center for Research in Reproduction, and fellow researchers have been testing a sustained released, testosterone micro-capsule that consists of a thick liquid injected under the skin. “It largely depends on how funding continues. The technology is there. We know how it would work,” Coviello told MSNBC.

Scientists are also experimenting with a new implant, the intra vas device (IVD), that would block the flow of sperm. The device, which consists of tiny silicone plugs, would be another reversible birth control method for men. While the plugs would be inserted and removed surgically, the procedure is not as permanent as a surgical vasectomy.

Sources:

MSNBC 10/1/06; Daily Telegraphy Reporter 10/10/06; Full Effect Magazine 10/4/06

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