A Once-A-Month Contraceptive Pill Is Currently Being Tested By Scientists

A contraceptive pill designed to be taken orally once a month has been developed by researchers who say it would offer women more choice and control over their fertility.

Once swallowed, the pill will remain in the stomach for four weeks, slowly releasing hormones to prevent pregnancy.

According to the BBC, it is specially designed to resist immediate attack by stomach acid. A team based in the US has tested it in pigs and hopes human trials can start within a few years.

Researchers hope that this monthly pill would be a good option for women who want to use contraception orally but worry about remembering to take it daily. 

The development of such a novel contraceptive, however, is still in its early stages. The conventional Pill boasts about 99% efficacy, meaning fewer than one in every hundred women using it will get pregnant.

However, missing doses or taking the pill at the wrong times does affect its contraceptive abilities.

Experts say that doing either of those deems the pill some 91% effective, meaning about nine in every hundred women using it will get pregnant in any given year.

Other long-term contraceptive choices include bi-monthly injections or patches that need changing weekly.

Anatole Menon-Johansson, from the charity Brook, said: "This is an exciting breakthrough for contraceptive options, and expanding the range of methods available is certainly a positive.

"However, additional work is required to ensure that the dose can be delivered at a sufficient level to suppress ovulation, and then this approach will need to be tested in humans."

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