A new injectable form of male birth control could provide an alternative method to couples who want to avoid potentially unsafe birth control, such as the Mirena intrauterine device (IUD). The one-time injection, called Vasalgel, is long-term but reversible, and does not contain any hormones, unlike the Mirena IUD.
Vasalgel consists of a polymer contraceptive injected directly into the vas deferens, which will prevent unwanted pregnancies until the patient decides to receive a similar injection to undo the process. Female alternatives such as the Mirena IUD are only available to women who have already had children, and could pose risks related to artificial hormones and device migration.
Thousands of women have complained of Mirena IUD side effects, including pain, bleeding and tissue damage when the device perforates the uterus and migrates through the body. Manufacturer Bayer Pharmaceuticals faces thousands of Mirena lawsuits alleging that the device caused serious injuries.