Male birth control: Why are condoms and vasectomies the only options?

  • Many unplanned pregnancies end in abortion, but options for male birth control are limited.
  • Gender bias, along with other factors, may be slowing development.
  • There cannot be equity in family planning without more options for men, experts say.

Nearly half of all pregnancies around the world are unintended, according to a report from the United Nations published in March. While some of these pregnancies become a source of joy, more than half of them end in abortion. Other unplanned pregnancies that come to term create a cascade of wide-ranging consequences, including fewer educational opportunities for the women who give birth, reduced participation in the labor market, and risks to mental and physical well-being of mother and child.

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