Sexuality: soon a non-hormonal contraceptive gel for women?

The US company Evofem has announced that it has developed a hormone-free contraceptive gel for women called Amphora. Tested successfully, it could arrive on the American market in 2020 before being marketed in Europe.

That should please millions of people. While more and more women complain about the side effects of their hormonal contraception (low libido, weight loss, negative impact on morale ...) and worry after the scandals of the pill of 3eand 4egeneration, the American company Evofem announced to have developed a hormone-free contraceptive gel for women named Amphora. Tested successfully in a clinical trial, this method could arrive in the US market during the year 2020.

The researchers tested the gel, to be applied inside the vagina and on the cervix, up to an hour before sexual intercourse, on 1400 women between 18 and 35 years old. menstrual. At the end of the study, Amphora had an effectiveness rate of 86% according to Evofem. No serious side effects have been reported.

"A non-hormonal method such as Amphora has no influence on the menstrual cycle and avoids systemic side effects such as mood changes, depression, weight gain, low libido and vaginal dryness," welcomes the laboratory.

This gel could also protect some STIs in the process

In detail, the gel is composed of lactic acid, citric acid and potassium bitartrate. It would maintain the PH of the vagina between 3.5 and 4.5, making it hostile to sperm and preventing them from reaching the egg. It could also help fight several viral and bacterial pathogens that cause some Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs). Studies in progress should test its effectiveness on chlamydia, gonorrhea but also bacterial vaginosis. For the rest, the use of condoms remains essential.

With these results, Evofem would like to launch Amphora in the US market in the year 2020. To do this, the company raised $ 80 million at the beginning of the summer. With its "new and very effective method (...) that finally meets the desires of women to avoid hormones", the group hopes to "upset the contraceptive market". After marketing in the United States, the product should then arrive in Europe and the rest of the world. This process will be entrusted to "highly qualified partners," says director Saundra Pelletier at The San Diego Union-Tribune.

In search of new alternatives to the classic female pill

If this happens, Amphora will join the very closed circle of hormone-free contraceptives available today such as the condom (85% effective according to the site and the intrauterine device copper. The latter, whose break is ensured by a specialist (GP, gynecologist or midwife), is however disadvised to many women.

In fact, those with a malformation of the uterus or a fibroid, an STI of at least three months, cancer of the cervix, or those who suffer from unexplained vaginal bleeding or who have just given birth, should 'to avoid. It is also not recommended for patients suffering from endometriosis or polycystic ovarian syndrome because of the severe pain it could cause during menstruation.

Faced with the growing disavowal of women to the traditional pill, researchers are trying to develop other alternatives. Recently, scientists have talked about them by making a contraceptive pill for men. Provisionally titled "11-beta-MNTDC", she successfully passed the first phase 1 clinical trials of 40 volunteers. "Our results suggest that this pill, which combines two hormonal activities into one, will reduce sperm production while preserving libido," the researchers explain. If they still have to continue their work and test sexually active couples, this study is therefore encouraging. According to them, a "safe and reversible hormonal contraception should be available within ten years".

Video: Dr. Lisa Talks Birth Control Options (April 2020).