Contraceptive Research

by Dr. Maurice Leibman on October 1, 2010

Contraception dates back to ancient Egypt where amorous couples  relied  on  condoms  made of linen !! . Now, after 3,000 years, although we can intercept a missile in outer  space , we are often outwitted by a wandering sperm …

The N.Y. Times recently ( 10/26/2010), reported some interesting new research technologies that are quite nifty and promise to be inexpensive as well.

The state of the art right now for permanent birth control is the Essure procedure. There have been approximately 500,000  procedures  done  worldwide , with a success rate of 99.7%. The Essure is done in the office, with mild sedation and sometimes no local anesthesia is even necessary. It is tolerated extremely well with a high satisfaction rate amongst patients. The procedure is covered by insurance and is significantly less expensive than if done in the hospital or in an outpatient facility.  This Essure procedure replaces the old defunct “tubal ligation” which is relegated to  a thing of the past, except in special circumstances.

New idea’s and technologies are   emerging , for example, adding a microbicide to the vaginal ring may help prevent the spread of HIV and other STD’s. Also, researches are testing whether adding a slow release compound to the vaginal ring would help reduce the risk of cervical cancer.

Another new contraceptive that would have far-reaching impact is the SINO-IMPLANT 11 . a tiny pair of rods inserted under the skin in the upper arm to release hormones. The advantage is that it can last 4 – 5 years, and cost is very little. This implant is already in use in China where some 100,000 units have been placed with no safety issues.

From India, comes a reversible birth control for men . It is an  injection that hardens to create a plug in the male duct that carries the sperm. To reverse it, a health care provider injects a solvent that dissolves the plug.

Stay tuned !!  Watch for new technology over the next couple of years. Keep watching our blog !!

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