Side effects may include: life

Innovation in male contraception raises controversy

Male Contraception. (Photo by Deanna Hasselaar/SAIT)

Male Contraception. (Photo by Deanna Hasselaar/SAIT)

When it comes to male contraception, many people aren’t convinced that the side effects are worth the long-term protection it comes with. 

A new study for male birth control published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, found that an injectable hormone could suppress sperm production and help prevent pregnancies. 

The highly effective contraceptive was discontinued because of unforseen and long-lasting side effects that the injection carried.

Radio and television student, Mackenzie Meyer, believes that the best alternative for solving this problem is to develop new medications that have fewer side effects for both men and women.Side effects that include mood disorders, increased libido, mood swings, muscle pain and acne.

“It definitely changes your opinion knowing that the side effects that men are having are similar to ones that women already experience,” Meyer said. 

“It takes two people. It shouldn’t be up to one person to take action against an unplanned pregnancy.”

While the new contraception would be a good choice for men not willing to commit to a vasectomy, with risks including longterm infertility from the drug, Meyer said that she is questioning if men would consider taking it.

“There’s the stereotype that only women can take birth control, but women experience  some of the same symptoms that appeared in the study.

“It’s always better to have more protection than none.” 

People’s overall lifestyle will play a part in whether or not they are committed to handling the side effects the drug carries over the side effect of an unplanned pregnancy, said petroleum engineering and technology student, Adam Buchanan.

“I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t say I wouldn’t want to take [male birth control] at one point in my life,” said Buchanan. 

Considering the side effects of female contraceptives, Buchanan said that the effects of this new medication shouldn’t be something men can’t handle. “Hearing the risk of non-reversible effects would probably scare someone in their twenties, especially if they see a family in their future,” he said. 

“It’s always good to protect yourself in one way, but I think in correlation with a woman taking birth control, it sounds pretty good to me.”

If the new drug falls under health insurance or isn’t expensive to the public, Buchanan said that the drug would most likely be a success in sales.

“I think it would do better than flu shots would.” 

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