For prevention of unwanted pregnancies, it is usually the woman who is saddled with the responsibility for ensuring effective birth control. Now, however, Scottish researchers at the University of Edinburgh are holding out hope for an injectible male contraceptive, which could require more men to get involved in the birth control process.
The trial, conducted under the aegis of the World Health Organisation, involved 200 couples from all over the world.
The injection consists of a combination of hormones – testosterone and progesterone, combined to lower sperm count, which effectively helps couples prevent unplanned pregnancies.
The trial consisted of two injections. The result of this is that the man’s sperm count is lowered to less than the rate required for initiating a pregnancy.
Whereas the ordinary count is about 20 million sperm per milliliter, the jabs were seen to reduce this sperm count to as low as zero in some cases; and to less than one million in others, which is too low a sperm count to cause a pregnancy. The jabs are required to be repeated after two months.
Professor Richard Anderson, from Edinburgh University’s reproductive and developmental sciences division was quoted as having been encouraged by the results of this trial.