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Why aren't there better methods of birth control?

I know a lot of women who are dissatisfied with their birth control, especially the pill.  Apparently, the body uses those hormones for a lot of things besides conception, like making you depressed and gain weight and totally uninterested in the activity with which the pill is supposed to help you.

Ann Friedman says we need better birth control, and explores why we don't have it:

"I think a lot of the last decades of work by the industry has been in taking hormonal methods and changing them a little bit, tweaking them, as opposed to huge leaps and revolutionary changes," says Jill Schwartz, medical director of CONRAD, a reproductive health research institution. Yet even she is not optimistic that women would be willing to try an experimental new method. "It's economic. It's going to cost so much to make a new product... But it's not going to be a huge market share. So for industry it's not enticing."


Are pharmaceutical companies so busy inventing illnesses and wooing doctors that they can't bother to invest in R&D for a product for which 99 percent of American women are potential consumers--not to mention the rest of the world? Have social conservatives made birth control so controversial that even the most forward-thinking university researcher can't find funding for this research and even the most profit-thirsty CEO doesn't want to go through the FDA approval process? Or is the human reproductive system really so complicated that we unlocked the only way of controlling it way back in 1951? My friends and I would like some answers.


Asked by tasches at 6:22 PM on Apr. 29, 2011 in Health

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This question is closed.
Answers (4)
  • i think that the nuvaring is the best form of bc. i have a great sex drive, no weight gain, lowest dose of hormones you can get, set it and forget it. i love it. been on it for over 9 months

    Answer by momofone725 at 6:26 PM on Apr. 29, 2011

  • why not use a diaphram? it's non-hormonal so there's no side effects, less waste and requires only inserting and removing and a some spermicide.
    i really don't know why they aren't trying harder to come up with more kinds of bc for women to choose from, i wish they would though

    Answer by angevil53 at 7:20 PM on Apr. 29, 2011

  • agreed, i hate the way BC makes me feel

    Answer by asil at 10:43 AM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • good question, especially for women over 35. We need more non hormonal methods.

    Answer by Jerichos_Mommy at 3:39 PM on Apr. 30, 2011