Men can now take a hormone injection as an effective method of contraception.
Researchers report that the shot was almost 96 percent effective in tests on 270 men who were using it. There were four pregnancies among their partners. But, despite working most of the time, there were side effects, including acne and mood swings, reports the BBC.
Male hormonal contraceptives have been being tested for 20 years, with researchers looking for an effective way of suppressing sperm production without causing unpleasantside effects.
The study, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, and published by the Endocrine Society, looked at men aged 18-45 who had been in monogamous relationships for at least a year. Their partners had to agree to take part. The men's sperm counts were checked at the beginning of the study, and had be considered normal. They then had two hormone injections made of progesterone and testosterone every eight weeks. They were monitored for up to six months until their sperm count fell to under one million.
They then used the shot as the only form of contraception during the year-long study.
Dr Mario Festin, of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva, who carried out the study, said: "The study found it is possible to have a hormonal contraceptive for men that reduces the risk of unplanned pregnancies in the partners of men who use it. This has been one step in a long journey of finding the right combination for male hormonal contraception.”
Most of the men in the study were willing to use the shots again as a form of contraception.
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