Around 40-45% of pregnancies are unplanned , and these unplanned pregnancies can cause a number of different hardships for parent(s) and families. Women have many different options if they choose to use birth control. With the most popular being oral contraceptives, there are also non-hormonal options.
Until recently, the only male birth control has been the following:
● Condoms: A birth control method that comes in different sizes, shapes, and textures. There is also a variety of ingredients such as latex, polyurethane, polyisoprene, and lambskin .
● Vasectomy: A permanent option for male birth control, this is a surgical procedure that cuts off sperm to semen .
Male Birth Control Shot
As of 2019, a new male birth control shot was being tested in India while patented in India, China, and the United States . The shot is called RISUG, which stands for “reversible inhibition of sperm under guidance” . The shot is “non-hormonal, minimally invasive, reversible, and is effective for up to 10 years” . RISUG is 99% effective, which makes it comparable to a vasectomy but reversible . According to a 2019 study, RISUG is a safe procedure that has no significant adverse effects and is successful as a contraceptive method.
How RISUG Works
First, patients receive a local anesthetic. Inside the RISUG, there is a polymer gel that is injected “into the vas deferens (two tubes that carry sperm from the testes to the penis)” . The gel is positively charged, allowing it to attach to the inner walls of the vas deferens. Sperm is negatively charged, so the gel “damages their heads and tails, rendering them infertile” . The gel stays in the vas deferens until removed. Using an injection of water and baking soda, the gel can be flushed out .
The male birth control shot is a reliable and safe way for men to prevent unplanned pregnancy. However, it is always recommended to consult a doctor before going through with the shot.
1. Dawn Stacey, P. (n.d.). Is Male Birth Control on the Horizon? Retrieved from https://www.verywellhealth.com/male-birth-control-injections-3970355
2. Gava, G., & Meriggiola, M. C. (2019, March 14). Update on male hormonal contraception. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6419257/
Author: Sophie Gangi
Editor: Kayjah Taylor
Health Scientist: Ashlee Lee