Non-hormonal contraceptive (contraceptive) drugs are a small group of medicines that are used for local contraception.
Another name for non-hormonal contraceptive drugs – vaginal spermicides – fully reflects the features of their use and the mechanism of contraceptive action.
Indications for use
Non-hormonal contraceptives are indicated for local contraception in women of reproductive age: as an alternative to hormonal contraceptives in the presence of contraindications to their use (for example, smoking, age over 35 years), in the postpartum period, after termination of pregnancy (abortion), while breastfeeding.
In addition, it is preferable to use non-hormonal contraceptives for women before menopause, as well as with irregular sexual intercourse.
Non-hormonal contraceptive drugs have a contraceptive effect, which develops due to immobilization and destruction of the sperm head (spermicidal effect). In addition, non-hormonal birth control pills can thicken and thicken cervical mucus, making it impervious to sperm. In addition, non-hormonal contraceptives (in particular, benzalkonium chloride) form a continuous film on the vaginal mucosa, which largely prevents sperm from entering the uterus.
In addition, benzalkonium chloride in high concentrations has a pronounced antimicrobial effect: acting as a surfactant, the drug dissolves the shells of a number of bacteria, fungi, protozoa, and also negatively affects various viruses. In particular, the main causative agents of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are sensitive to benzalkonium chloride – gonococci (causative agents of gonorrhea), chlamydia (causative agents of chlamydia), Trichomonas (causative agents of trichomoniasis). In addition, benzalkonium chloride has a negative effect on corynebacteria, staphylococci, enterococci, as well as fungi of the genus Candida, just herpes viruses, cytomegalovirus, etc.
Classification of non-hormonal contraceptive drugs
Non-hormonal contraceptive drugs include:
In addition, quinosole, menefegol, phenylmercury nitrate, citric acid and boric acid also have vaginal spermicidal effects.
Basics and features of treatment with non-hormonal contraceptive drugs
The range of non-hormonal contraceptives is represented by a wide variety of local dosage forms: vaginal suppositories (suppositories), vaginal tablets and capsules, creams, gels, foams (aerosols), dissolving films, sponges, tampons, etc.
Among non-hormonal contraceptives, the most pronounced contraceptive properties are inherent in benzalkonium chloride (the drug is 4-5 times more active than nonoxynol).
Unlike hormonal contraceptives with pronounced contraceptive properties (more than 99%), vaginal spermicides, when used correctly, have a contraceptive effect of about 85%.
Vaginal dosage forms with benzalkonium chloride (vaginal tablets, suppositories, films, etc.) are injected deep into the vagina for 15-20 minutes after intercourse – this time is necessary for complete dissolution and even distribution of the drug along the inner lining of the vagina.
Benzalkonium chloride is used before each sexual intercourse – in case of repeated sexual intercourse, be sure to use another pill (candle, film).
It should be noted that when using vaginal spermicides, it is forbidden to use soap or soap products for the hygiene of the genitals, as this leads to the destruction of benzalkonium chloride and the loss of its contraceptive properties. This rule applies for a period of time two hours before and for two hours after intercourse. In this case, you should use extremely plain clean water.
Vaginal spermicides can be used as a safety method of contraception when replacing an intrauterine device, as well as when you skip taking a hormonal contraceptive drug. At the same time, the parallel use of barrier contraception (in particular, condoms) is allowed.
It is important to note that non-hormonal contraceptives are not able to fully protect a woman from sexually transmitted infections (STIs), therefore, it is recommended to use this type of contraception with a stable, trusted sexual partner in a stable monogamous relationship. Otherwise, it is necessary to use condoms that prevent the transmission of most STIs, including gonorrhea, chlamydia, syphilis, trichomoniasis, and HIV.