Reversible, Non-hormonal Birth Control for Men
Previous attempts to produce hormonal birth control for men were dropped at the trial stage because of side effects that caused men to drop out of the studies. Although the side effects are pretty much the same as those in women (weight gain, mood swings, and others), the researchers considered that “the risks to the study participants outweighed the potential benefits.”
Of course, men can't get pregnant, so why take the risks that many women endure every day to avoid it, am I right?
Yet, early in 2016, the media presented news of a non-hormonal, reversible contraceptive for men called Vasalgel. The method involves injecting a semi-permeable polymer gel in the vas deferens (the tube that guides sperm from the testes to the penis), which blocks spermatozoids from entering ejaculate (the spermatozoids are too big to pass through the gel).
Once the man is ready to have children, he can simply have the gel dissolved with another injection. According to the testing done on rabbits, Vasalgel works right away, and lasts for up to a year.
Although already popular in India, Vasalgel is being tested to according to U.S. specifications, and passed the first round of clinical testing. According to sources, it could be available to the public by 2018.
A product like Vasalgel could increase the number of men who want to have access to more long-lasting forms of birth control, making the responsibility for family planning more equal than it is now.
Hope for Future Research
Scientific research is never done. We must continue to research and gather data on the social and financial benefits of inexpensive and easy access to birth control.
We need more viable male birth control methods including, but not limited to, Vasalgel. Women know that not all birth control works for every woman. This makes birth control for men a necessity.
What kind of research about birth control would you like to see in the coming years? Share your thoughts with us!