Ladies, your prayers are (slowly) being answered. Sick of the pills, the inserts, the injections and the patches? Well, it’s almost time to tell your partner that birth control is HIS problem now.
Just close your eyes and imagine…
A man’s wife doesn’t feel good on the Pill. He’d like to have the “old her” back, and figures it’s his turn to take responsibility for contraception. But they want another child, so vasectomy is not an option. So what does he do? While he drops his electric car off for a quick charge, he pops into the doctor’s office for a recharge of his own: 15 minutes of ultrasound treatment, for 6 months of contraception. Sound futuristic? It’s not. The effect of ultrasound on sperm production has been known since the 1970’s, but never pursued since then.
So, how would it work, exactly?
Like This Story?
Your $10 tax-deductible contribution helps support our research, reporting, and analysis.
A one-off hit of ultrasound waves every six months could prevent a man’s testes from producing sperm and leave the man infertile temporarily, say scientists. It would wear off and would have no bad side affects, the researchers believe. However, the long-term effects are still unknown, such as whether a man’s fertility would return after multiple uses over the years.
“We think this could provide men with up to six months of reliable, low-cost, non-hormonal contraception from a single round of treatment,” said Dr James Tsuruta, from the University of North Carolina.
“Our long-term goal is to use ultrasound from therapeutic instruments that are commonly found in sports medicine or physical therapy clinics as an inexpensive, long-term, reversible male contraceptive suitable for use in developing to first world countries,” he also said.
Longer-term, non-hormonal birth control? Sounds amazing! But how do we know it’s really on the horizon? Because some serious funding is being applied to make it so.
The team of researchers has been awarded $100,000 (£67,000) from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to prepare for a trial in humans. The first step is to establish the minimum intensity of ultrasound required to act as a contraceptive in rats. The team also plan to investigate the mechanism that causes temporary infertility.
“Establishing safety, efficacy and reversibility: these are our top concerns,” said Dr Tsuruta.
Still feel like you should back up his birth control? How about adding a gel on top of it?
CBS 2 News visited a male fertility expert Wednesday. Dr. Laurence Levine at Rush University Medical Center said he sees one or two dozen patients each week, who are taking testosterone gel.
For decades, testosterone gels have been prescribed for men of all ages whose bodies are slowing down, but after several months something happens to their sperm count.
“We find that often times that when they take that testosterone they will have suppression or reduction of their sperm production. So it can compromise fertility status,” Levine said.
Researchers believe that, in the right dose, testosterone, perhaps enhanced with female horomones, might be the perfect male contraceptive
The gel is applied by rubbing a bit on your elbow and stomach.
Now the only question left is, how much will these new birth control developments upset Rachel Welch?
Mini Roundup: It apears that now that she’s unfettered, Former First Lady Laura Bush is really for equal rights for gays and a woman’s right to choose. As one writer points out, that puts her “slightly to the left of the current occupant of the White House.”
May 12, 2010
A Culture of Recrimination or of Life? – America Magazine
More Condoms, Contraceptives, Midwives, and Educated Girls Could Prevent Most … – Kansas City infoZine
MCCL targets Horner – Minnesota Public Radio
Aldermen Fighting Against Abortion Restrictions – WCHL 1360
Roundup: Kagan backs abortion restriction – Congress.org
New Williams Ad Hammers On Onorato On Abortion, Guns. – Capitol Ideas with John L. Micek
Laura Bush: pro abortion and gay marriage – The Guardian
AP: Abortion rights group endorses Specter foe – The Associated Press
No bills vetoed by McDonnell – Richmond Times Dispatch
How did a new politics turn into rule by rich, white men? – The Guardian
Memos reveal Kagan’s centrist side – Kevin Sites in the Hot Zone
West Virginia Loss Sends Another Warning Shot to Incumbents – The AtlanticWire
Laura Bush Supports Gay Marriage, Abortion – ABC News
Sarah Palin Hits Washington on Friday for Anti-Abortion Fundraiser – Politics Daily
Laura Bush: I’m Pro Choice – The New Ledger
Birth Control Pill Sparked Contraceptive Revolution – Voice of America
Why Is Population Control Such a Radioactive Topic? – Mother Jones
Kenyans urged to adopt family planning – Capital FM
No more pills: Male contraceptive takes new approach – EurekAlert
Male contraception – administered by ultrasound?! – MadeForMums
World Bank Announces Five-Year Plan To Reduce Maternal Deaths, Fertility Rates … – Kaiser Family Foundation
Researchers Testing Birth Control Gel For Men – CBS2 Chicago
Human Trials Starting On Ultrasound As Birth Control – Babble Magazine
Gates Foundation Backs New Contraceptive Method – Tom’s Guide
New HIV and AIDS vaccine for Kenyan men – VSO International
HIV+ cases on the rise in Milwaukee area – Examiner.com
US Expands HIV/AIDS Programs In Caribbean – Kaiser Family Foundation
Advances Against AIDS – Imperial Valley News
Capps Introduces Maternal Health Bill – Ms. Magazine
The Role of the United States in Combating Human Trafficking – US Department of State
Women and Cancer: Cervical, Ovarian, and Uterine – HealthNewsDigest.com
Time to stop celebrating mothers’ sacrifice – China Daily
May 13, 2010
Kagan Now Welcomes Confirmation “Charade” – The New American
State high court justice steps away from abortion lawsuit – Anchorage Daily News
UN head steers clear of abortion debate – Toronto Star
On Capitol Hill, Kagan Gets to Know Her Voters – New York Times
Guest Column: ‘Pill’ let women have a family and a career – Memphis Commercial Appeal
FDA approves new birth control pill – Hindustan Times
World Bank Announces Increased Lending For Family Planning, Maternal Health … – Medical News Today
New plan to reduce maternal deaths – Public Service
Less Money for AIDS Treatment – UN Dispatch
Latina teen pregnancy on conference agenda – Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Surviving Motherhood – Macau Daily Times
Viewpoints: Breast cancer tests save money, lives – Sacramento Bee
Birth-control opponents greenwash their message – Grist Magazine