Plant origin contraceptives: phytochemistry, mechanism of action, and side effects

Ravi Kant Upadhyay


This review examines the effects of plant origin various contraceptives on ovulatory events, egg transport,
toxic action on eggs, end of implantation stages, and implantation through hypothalamic and pituitary controls.
Plant-origin products modify the hormonal environment of fertilized eggs or developing ovums by the use
of steroids and other chemicals. These herbal contraceptives affect spermatogenesis and lowers down the
number of spermatocytes, intromission, and ejaculation frequencies. These also inhibit sperm production in
males and obstruct fertilization in females. These herbal agents successfully obstruct reproduction and control
the production, release, and action of hormones. Plant natural products work by blocking the effects of antiandrogens,
which affect menstruation and pregnancy, cause birth, and birth control. This review explains the
anti-fertility action of many plant species with active ingredients. It is important to understand the long-term
effects of plant natural products on body metabolism to prevent undesired toxicity to other organs. These might
have more effective role in the regulation of fertility and breakdown of pregnancy. These could be used for longterm
family planning equally by both male and female partners. There is a great need for effective, reversible, and
safe contraceptives for men and women, but the mechanisms of action of plant extracts and active compounds
have yet to be determined.

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