Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
Clinical Trial
, 84 (1), 112-22

Oral Progestogen Combined With Testosterone as a Potential Male Contraceptive: Additive Effects Between Desogestrel and Testosterone Enanthate in Suppression of Spermatogenesis, Pituitary-Testicular Axis, and Lipid Metabolism

Affiliations
Clinical Trial

Oral Progestogen Combined With Testosterone as a Potential Male Contraceptive: Additive Effects Between Desogestrel and Testosterone Enanthate in Suppression of Spermatogenesis, Pituitary-Testicular Axis, and Lipid Metabolism

F C Wu et al. J Clin Endocrinol Metab.

Abstract

The effects of a synthetic oral progestogen, desogestrel (DSG), administered with low dose testosterone (T) were investigated to determine the optimal combination for suppression of gonadotropins and spermatogenesis to targets compatible with effective male contraception. Twenty-four healthy male volunteers (33.2 +/- 0.9 yr) were randomly assigned to 3 groups (n = 8) to receive: 1) 300 microg DSG orally daily and 100 mg T enanthate, i.m., weekly; 2) 300 microg DSG and 50 mg T enanthate; or 3) 150 microg DSG and 100 mg T enanthate for 24 weeks. To investigate the individual contribution to the combined action, DSG was administered alone for the first 3 weeks, and T enanthate was added on day 22. After 24-week treatment, sperm density in 78% (18 of 23) of the subjects became azoospermic, whereas 91.7% (22 of 24) and 95.8% (23 of 24) suppressed to less than 1 million/mL and less than 3 million/mL, respectively. The 300 microg DSG with 50 mg T enanthate combination induced azoospermia in 8 of 8 subjects, and the suppression of sperm density was significantly greater than that in the 300 microg DSG/100 mg T enanthate group, but was not different from that in the 150 microg DSG/100 mg T enanthate group. DSG (300 or 150 microg daily) alone in the first 3 weeks suppressed LH, FSH, and T to 60.6%, 48.0%, and 35.4%, respectively, of the baseline. Addition of T enanthate (50 and 100 mg weekly) raised plasma T to the physiological range and induced a further fall in LH and FSH to the limits of assay detection. There was no consistent difference in mean LH and FSH levels among the three groups during treatment or recovery, except that FSH remained detectable in a higher proportion of samples from the group receiving 300 microg DSG with 50 mg T enanthate. Total cholesterol, high density lipoprotein cholesterol, and low density lipoprotein cholesterol decreased by 9.3 +/- 1.7%, 10.3 +/- 2.6%, and 7.7 +/- 2.8%, respectively, during treatment with DSG alone with no difference between 300 and 150 microg. Addition of T enanthate (both 50 and 100 mg weekly) induced a further fall only in high density lipoprotein cholesterol to 22.6 +/- 3.7% from the baseline. In summary, the combined actions of oral DSG with low doses of T enanthate were highly effective in suppressing pituitary-testicular functions in adult men. The optimal regimen for inducing azoospermia was 300 microg DSG daily with 50 mg T enanthate weekly. Oral DSG exerted discernible effects on lipid metabolism. We conclude that the combination of oral progestogens with low dose T is a promising approach to achieve effective reversible male contraception.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 4 PubMed Central articles

  • Male Contraception
    JK Amory. Fertil Steril 106 (6), 1303-1309. PMID 27678037. - Review
    Although female contraceptives are very effective at preventing unintended pregnancy, some women can not use them because of health conditions or side-effects, leaving so …
  • Hormonal Approaches to Male Contraception
    C Wang et al. Curr Opin Urol 20 (6), 520-4. PMID 20808223. - Review
    Male hormonal contraception is efficacious, reversible and well tolerated for the target population of younger men in stable relationships. Suppression of spermatogenesis …
  • Advances in Male Contraception
    ST Page et al. Endocr Rev 29 (4), 465-93. PMID 18436704. - Review
    Despite significant advances in contraceptive options for women over the last 50 yr, world population continues to grow rapidly. Scientists and activists alike point to t …
  • Determinants of the Rate and Extent of Spermatogenic Suppression During Hormonal Male Contraception: An Integrated Analysis
    PY Liu et al. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 93 (5), 1774-83. PMID 18303073.
    Male hormonal contraceptives can be practically applied to a wide range of men but require coadministration of an androgen with a second agent (i.e. progestin) for earlie …

Publication types

LinkOut - more resources

Feedback