Now scientists have come close to revealing a male birth control pill or oral contraceptive that can retain your sex drive intact but prevention of pregnancy is guaranteed. In the foreseeable future, we can expect to witness the birth of the first continuous, reversible male contraceptive pill. The long-due breakthrough can create a win-win situation for all as the playing field is likely to be leveled for both men and women.
What if men can enjoy a sex life without fear of losing their libido, without the fear of making his partner pregnant, and can also have children if and when he desires so? This is exactly the idea behind the male birth control pill. The Pill has the power to deactivate the sperm before reaching the egg in the woman’s body. The added advantage is that men need to take the pill only four times a year. Researchers believe that this male birth control pill is 100% effective, according to an article in Telegraph, a British Newspaper.
Introduced five decades ago, the female birth control pill more commonly referred to as “the pill” is still in use by millions of people all over the world. It literally put the burden on women to take the responsibility of preventing pregnancy though it was also claimed to revolutionize female sexuality. The only birth control options available for men were vasectomy and condoms. These methods had not met with great success due to various reasons.
Women were greatly relieved of the perpetual fear of pregnancy in May 1960 when the FDA approved the female birth control pill. The concept behind the female birth control pill is to prevent the release of eggs by the ovaries. The pill was a combination of the hormones estrogen and progestin that had the ability to shut down the brain signals to the ovaries telling them to release eggs. If ovulation does not happen pregnancy is not possible.
Now, after fifty years, there is the hope of having a male equivalent of the birth control pill. It is interesting to note why it has taken fifty years to come up with the male birth control pill. There is only one egg per month that gets released by a female whereas the male releases nearly 120 million sperms with every single ejaculation. It is therefore it is easier to control one single egg rather than millions of sperms. The other reason pharmaceutical companies simply did not find enough funding for a male contraceptive pill.
The other comforting news is that the male birth control pill would have highly specific effects. The side effects are likely to be much lesser than those of the women on such oral contraceptive pills. The male contraceptive pill is based on microbiology and bioinformatics which has the ability to attack only the sperm cells.
The breakthrough may have been made of a male version of the oral contraceptive pill has been announced in the PopSci.com report recently. According to the report, Haim Breitbart of Bar-Ilan University in Tel Aviv has come up with a compound that has the potency to shut down the reproductive capabilities of sperm. The male birth control pill was nicknamed by Breitbart as “The Bright Pill” after his own name.
The man who takes the pill needs not to worry about losing his sex drive and also can have children if he wants to at a later stage. This compound was tested on sexually active mice and the result was that small doses caused one month of sterility and large doses resulted in three months of sterility. A remarkable aspect of this male contraceptive pill is that the mice continued to have sex! That means these pills do not affect the male libido as it works only on the sperm cells so that they lose their ability to fertilize the eggs leading to pregnancy.
According to Breitbart, a man could sterilize himself for a short duration instead of having to undergo surgery (vasectomy) which is irreversible. Many complained of harmful after-effects of the surgery and those who used the condom reduced in sensation during sex. This is in sheer contrast with the previous attempts at finding male contraceptives that had this common drawback that the drugs lowered the sex drive of males significantly.
Breibart explains that the mice that were administered this breakthrough compound behaved nicely. According to him, they ate and had sex and were laughing. It means that there was no side effect or change in their sexual behavior. There was no restraint in their sexual activities to be exact which is a very important point to be noted. So, men who take the Bright Pill can have children later if they decide to do so.
Breitbart has shown through his research and his paper that the Brith Pill actually jams the sperm’s biochemical machinery. He explains that the mature sperm cells get busy synthesizing new proteins while they reside in the uterus. The period may extend for durations up to three days or even longer until the eggs get fertilized. This ensures that there is no chance of the eggs getting fertilized as the pill renders the sperms incapable of fertilizing the eggs.
If the success of the Bright Pill continues on non-mice creatures, the male birth control pill could be the real breakthrough of the century. This would be a significant one that could make it possible for a pipe dream to become a reality. There has been an increase in the number of people, who want men to take a more active role in the efforts towards contraception.
There is a silver lining that signals that this wish may be granted in the foreseeable future with the advent of the reversible male contraceptive pill.