How often has a man considered doing something about birth control only to flinch at the idea? So many men object to using condoms yet there are very few alternatives between the condom and a vasectomy.
Given the permanence of a vasectomy this leaves almost no options. Luckily researchers are getting closer to developing many alternatives for male contraception and women say it is about time.
One alternative that is having a lot of success in the trial stage is called the IVD or Intra Vas Device. With a vasectomy the vas tubes that carry the sperm from the testicles to the penis are cut.
This is a fairly permanent step to take, though sometimes it can be reversed should a man change his mind or, the more common reason, choose to start a family with a second wife.
The IVD is a simpler procedure likely with a more positive reversal prospect. A tiny cut is put into the scrotum. Inserted into the hole is the IVD, it is like a teeny plug made from silicone that prevents the sperm from moving around as it naturally would.
Therefore the sperm no longer is able to exit when the man reaches orgasm. The results of testing have been very positive.
High Rate of Effectiveness
When gauging test results there are two things that researchers must look at; one is the success of the device. But the second, which is equally as important, is the reaction to the device. The initial trials have not only showed a high rate of effectiveness but a willingness amongst men to use such a device.
Although they have not as of yet tried a reversible procedure among the male participants in the trials they have successfully reversed the process on monkeys.
Men seem to finally be willing to take some responsibility for contraception. The main issue seems to be what the means of contraception is that their women want them to use.
A study conducted in Europe and North America asked the question of nine thousand men. Sixty percent said they would be willing to do something to take the responsibility of contraception. They agreed it should not just be a womens issue. But they also were particular about what method they would be willing to use.
Male Contraceptive Pill
Most men were unwilling to take a male contraceptive pill. They were concerned about side effects and feared that it would impinge on their masculinity in some manner. They worried about risking physical changes were they to try a hormonal based contraceptive method. Some worried about growing breast tissue while others feared loss of facial hair or voice changes.
The only concern with the IVD is that there could be problems later with the build-up of sperm in the vas tubes. Some researchers have suggested allowing a tiny bit of sperm to flow out to relieve this pressure build up claiming it would not be enough to allow for conception. Others feel that would be irresponsible. The outcome of this is that more testing must be done to determine the worth of this device.
Illustration of Vas Deferens Muscles Courtesy of Wellcome Images Library Creative Commons Licence