Last updated on Jun 23rd, 2021 at 12:42 pm
A contraceptive pill for men has been on the cards for years and it looks like it is finally here
The Daily Mail has reported on the first-hand account of a man who has been part of the human trials of the contraceptive drug. The 32-year-old UK based paramedic told the paper that the contraceptive drug is a gell and not a pill and has some unexpected side effects.
We investigated what the contraceptive gel does, how it works and what men can expect when it finally hits the shelves.
What is in contraceptive gel?
So far the best way that men can take responsibility for contraception is through barrier contraceptives like condoms that stop semen from entering the vagina during sex preventing pregnancy.
The contraceptive gel allows men to prevent pregnancy before and sexual activity even takes place, like women have been doing for decades.
According to Health.com NES/T gel Developed by the Population Council and the NIH’s National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), contains Nestrone a compound made up of progestin and testosterone.
Progestin inhibits a mand ability to produce sperm so while he will still produce semen it will not be fertile. The testosterone in the gel restores the sex drive which could be negatively affected the progestin.
What are the side effects?
While the UK paramedic Ed, who volunteered to be part of the contraceptive gel trials when his partner developed sepsis because of her IUD told Daily Mail he had put on some weight and had hot flushes since he started using the contraceptive gel. This is a common complaint with women on contraceptives too, however similar to the reaction women have side effects are not the same for everyone.
Another trial participant James Owers who was part of the drug trials by The University of Edinburgh study told The BBC he used the gel daily, rubbing it into his skin around the shoulders after a shower and experienced no side effects. Although he did admit he has put on a little weight, he said it was likely because of his eating and drinking habits.
Will the gel make men infertile?
According to UT South Western Medical centre, a man’s body takes 90 days to produce sperm. Using the gel stops sperm production completely so that even if a man using the gel has sexual intercourse with a woman without any other form of contraception there will be no pregnancy resulting from their interaction.
While using the gel a man would be considered infertile but at least 90 days after he stops using the gel tests show that a man should be able to produce sperm again.
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