Male birth control has been a topic for the last few years. Most recently, the idea seemed to be dropped when the male birth control pill caused side effects (that most women experience with female birth control). However, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has picked the idea back up and is ready for testing.
The newest male birth control is not a pill at all. In fact, it is a gel called NES/T or Nestorone.
This gel contains segesterone acetate and testosterone.
The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development described the gel saying,
"It is applied to the back and shoulders and absorbed through the skin. The progestin blocks natural testosterone production in the testes, reducing sperm production to low or nonexistent levels."
Why a gel versus a pill? Nestorone cannot be absorbed by the body when taken orally. Testosterone also does not stay in the body for a full day if ingested in pill form.
In order to clear these hurdles, scientists developed the gel formulation so that the hormones could be fully absorbed by men's bodies.
According to the Population Council who developed the product, NES/T could solve major issues.
"Worldwide, 85 million pregnancies (40 percent of all pregnancies) per year are unplanned, contributing to a higher incidence of adverse health outcomes for women and infants."
With abortion not necessarily being an option for everyone, especially in the future (hey, Kavanaugh), male contraceptives could prove vital in curbing America's overpopulation issue.
Many people are excited for what this could mean for their lives.
This would be transformative. 1. Who says the NIH doesn’t invent drugs? Vaccines, Yescarta, and potentially a mal… https://t.co/ceVw2MRkE6— Walid Gellad, MD MPH (@Walid Gellad, MD MPH)1543432924.0
@WTOPLiving about time.— Sheena Voorhees 🎃💀 (@Sheena Voorhees 🎃💀)1543525178.0
Exciting news!!! NIH to evaluate effectiveness of male contraceptive skin gel https://t.co/KUYtzoDiQK— Erick J R Silva (@Erick J R Silva)1543441406.0
Pretty neat - it's a gel that you apply to the back and shoulders that gets absorbed through the skin. https://t.co/9vHTbdHLlR— Tom Castles (@Tom Castles)1543425805.0
Others are not sure that the gel is the holy grail of birth control.
@ABCWorldNews I can't count on men to shower regularly, you think they're gonna remember to rub shit on their back… https://t.co/JI2JyR2vpT— #BLM (@#BLM)1543559447.0
Oh, I can answer that: Nope. https://t.co/yznAu2ElhK— Rav Kelly. I am my resume (I am a Verb) (@Rav Kelly. I am my resume (I am a Verb))1543502048.0
Others are not sure stopping sperm production is the best course of action.
@tictoc https://t.co/1m0Rn77gST— NeoVoodooTech (@NeoVoodooTech)1543535437.0
The real question is, when will female birth control come with a shoulder rub?