A US couple is trying a male birth-control gel for the first time this week. Experts hope to see fewer side effects than the pill.
(Source: businessinsider.com)

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(Original link: businessinsider.com)

drukken Foto: Shutterstock Male birth control has typically been available in just one form: condoms. Those are about 85% effective at preventing pregnancy. A man in Washington state just became the first US patient to start a trial of a male-birth-control gel . The gel is a once-a-day treatment that men rub into their shoulders, and it reduces sperm count. Roughly 420 other couples in seven countries are also set to try the gel in the coming months. Shower, shave, and apply your male-birth-control rub. Daily personal-care routines are changing for at least two US couples this week, as a worldwide trial of male birth control gel kicks off on the West Coast. The couples are the first two of about 420 around the world who will eventually participate in a groundbreaking study of a form of male birth control that gets rubbed into a man’s shoulders once a day. The gel works by inhibiting a man’s natural testosterone production. Using a combination of progestin (Nestorone) and testosterone, the treatment interrupts the normal hormone-production processes in the testicles, thereby preventing men from producing viable, mature sperm. “That’s why it works, because sperms require all that testosterone inside the testicle,” Dr. Stephanie Page, a professor of medicine at the University of Washington who’s leading the trial, previously told Business Insider. The gel, which takes about eight to 12 weeks to become fully effective, is administered in a single pump on each shoulder. Study leaders suggest that men apply it after they shower, then wait to swim or bathe again for at least four hours (even though the goo dries in about five minutes). Zo gaat deze 29-jarige, populaire crypto-handelaar – die ooit bitcoin voor $25 kocht – om met de kelderende koers, hacks en scams After they rub the birth control on, men are instructed to wash their hands. They’re also advised to wear a shirt if they’re going to be getting cozy with women or children, since the gel contains male sex hormones. “If they are preparing for intercourse or close contact … they need to be wearing clothes. Or they need to shower,” Dr. Christina Wang, the project’s principal investigator said. The quest to develop a reversible form of male birth control that’s not condoms Foto: sourceShutterstock The first couple started their participation in the yearlong trial on Tuesday in Washington state. A second couple is set to receive their first gel pump on Friday at LA BioMed, the research center where Wang works. A third man in the US has been prescreened at the University of Kansas and is set to start his trial soon as well. Couples are also being recruited at sites in Chile, England, Scotland, Kenya, Sweden and Italy. The study is set to run at least until fall 2021 , with each couple using the gel birth control for a full year. There are many reasons – biological, political, and financial – why commercial male birth control hasn’t gotten off the ground yet. For one, pharmaceutical companies have focused on developing birth control for women because it’s easier, biologically speaking, to block one or two eggs per month than it is to stop millions of sperm from coming out of men’s bodies. But some women can’t take birth control pills, and some men want their own reliable way to prevent pregnancies (condoms are only about 85% effective ) that doesn’t require an irreversible and expensive vasectomy. “The goal of the whole field of male contraceptive development is to try and create choices for men and for families,” Page, who’s been working on male-birth-control solutions for roughly a decade, previously told Business Insider . “A lot of women can’t use contraceptives, and men want to share the burden of contraception.” Read More : A new form of male birth control is being tested around the world – and men only have to rub it on their shoulders once a day That’s true for at least one couple starting the trial this week. Wang said they came to her California clinic because female birth control wasn’t a good option for them. Page also said she personally answered messages from at least 20 interested couples in the Seattle area after news broke last week that the trial was kicking off with funding from the National Institutes of Health . The male gel keeps other tissues in the body functioning at normal testosterone loads, so it won’t chemically castrate the men , which has been a concern in the past with some male-birth-control-pill trials. The researchers have already completed a six-month trial of the gel and found that more than nine out of 10 men saw their sperm levels suppressed “to levels compatible with effective contraception,” Page said. But so far, the new gel has yet to pique the interest of a pharmaceutical company that wants to take male birth control to market. Male birth control might come with fewer side effects than the female version Some women are already lamenting on social media about how simple and side-effect-free the new men’s gel sounds. “I...