(Reversible) Male Birth Control Could Be Available in 2018

Male birth control (The Chicago Tribune)

Male birth control (The Chicago Tribune)

Whoa! Scientists recently made a discovery that puts us nearer to a male birth control method. And said method might even be available by 2018!

Here are the deets: Scientists at the Parsemus Foundation have developed a “non-hormonal male contraceptive,” which they’re calling Vasalgel. It’s a gel which gets injected into a man’s testicles. Once inside, the gel forms a protective barrier that prevents sperm from leaving the vans deferens (located inside the testicles).

Vasalgel explainer graphic (Tech Times)

Vasalgel explainer graphic (Tech Times)

So far, the gel has only been through animal testing, specifically on rabbits. Of the 12 rabbits tested, 11 revealed no traces of sperm within their semen within 29 days of receiving the injection. (That twelfth rabbit’s semen cleared of sperm soon after.) The effect endured throughout the 12-month study.

Another important aspect: it’s reversible! Scientists were able to inject a second gel into seven of the rabbits, and their sperm “rapidly” returned.

What does this mean for human men? It looks so promising, right? Unfortunately, we’ll have to wait a couple of years. Scientists now need to conduct a human trial, which could happen later this year. Of course, the results will need to be duplicated to get the greenlight. But who knows? Hopefully men around the world will be able to get this procedure done at their doctor’s office within the next five years.

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