On September 28, 2007, the second “Future of Male Contraception” conference sponsored by National Institutes of Health, World Health Organization, as well as other organizations was held in Seattle. There were many new male contraceptive ideas which seemed to be reasonable to those that had attended. Three of those possibilities really stood out to be future male contraceptive products. Would they be worth it? Of course, we don’t know the answer to that just yet, since the contraceptives have only been tested on animals, but of the three that will be mentioned here, they seem to have no negative effect on those tested.
The first form of male contraceptive is substantially equivalent to a vasectomy. This device is referred to as a sperm-blocker. In this process, rather than cutting the Vas Deferens, the tube itself is plugged. The ‘corking’ of the vas deferens tube, therefore, stops the flow of sperm and still saves the vas deferens from being completely done away with. The device is still being tested to see if whether or not a male will go back to normal after the plugs are removed.
The next promising idea is that on a no hormonal pill called CDB-4022. CDB-4022 prevents sperm from reaching its final destination and therefore prevents the pregnancy overall. Even though this pill has not been tested on any humans, it has worked successfully on monkeys that have been tested using CDB-4022. It has also been proven through these tests that once the test subjects have been taken off the pill, their fertility had returned in 16 weeks. Not the speediest of all waits, but to some, this could very well be the preferred choice.
The third contraceptive concept would be a pill that is seemingly more hormonal. This drug is called “selective androgen receptor modulator,” or SARM, and is currently being tested on human patients for other diseases such as a muscle degeneration and osteoporosis treatment. There is a similar drug being tested on rabbits which have shown a reduced sperm count in those tested with this drug.
These three new possibilities seem to be viable alternatives to traditional methods such as the classic vasectomy. These drugs may very well give those non-reversible contraceptives some good competition, especially when comparing it to the new sperm-blocking ‘plugs’ currently under development. Not all men will be interested in these new methods. But there are many people out there who would like to see more options for their contraceptive needs. While many of the current methods can either be very limiting ‘feeling wise’ or completely life-altering altogether, these new ideas will allow many men seeking permanent contraceptives without having to ‘lose’ any part of themselves.
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