Prototype male contraceptive pill, 1998-1999.
3 4 c m
actual image size: 32cm x 26cm

Prototype male contraceptive pill, 1998-1999.

© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library


This 'pill', tested by Edinburgh University in 1998 and 1999, is actually made up of a pill containing desogestrel and an implant containing testosterone. During the trial, the pill was taken four times daily and two implants were inserted under the skin on the abdomen, which lasted for three months. The implants were needed because the pill stopped the production of both sperm and testosterone (which could not be taken orally). The Edinburgh trials reduced the sperm count of 60 men to zero.

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