Sexual health experts are of the opinion that detailed research has to be done to confirm whether a fertility tracking app can prevent pregnancy.
This area has gained much attention after such an app – Natural Cycles – was given a go ahead as a contraceptive method. A clinical study was done in 2015 which proved that the app is as effective as any pill in its category.
How the app works
Women are provided with a form in which they input their body temperatures, date of menstruation and ovulation test results, reports The Telegraph.
The app then processes this data via an algorithm and then advises the women regarding their fertility status.
The advice should assist the women whether they are in a good position to have unprotected sex or not.
Whereas sexual experts have come out to support the notion that awareness app can widen one’s contraception choice, three organizations issued a warning on Thursday that being enlisted as a medical devise does not mean it can be effective.
Natural Cycles was approved as a class IIb medical device by Tüv Süd, which means it can now be marketed as a hormone-free, non-invasive contraceptive option.
While commenting on the latest technology meant to boost women health, Dr Elina Berglund, co-founder of Natural Cycles said that the women are always interested in a non-hormonal form of contraception. The app now offers exactly that.
Dr Berglund added that they conducted high quality clinical studies and met all the regulatory requirements, paving their way for provision of newer option for contraception.
But many may still wonder whether this new technique is more effective than any other method of avoiding unwanted pregnancy.
Natika Halil, from the Family Planning Association explains that women have to be keen on avoiding the misinformation that non-hormonal contraception, be it the IUD, condoms or fertility awareness is always better compared to the hormonal contraception.
“Although hormonal contraception has some potential side-effects and health risks, it can also have a range of benefits such as controlling menstrual bleeding, reducing PMS symptoms and managing acne.”
The market is currently flooded with numerous fertility apps as well as period trackers but there is no a set system to evaluate them.
Dr Cecilia Pyper from Fertility UK said that the researches they have done so far suggest most of the apps are inaccurate.
“Large, independently-conducted prospective trials are needed before apps can be considered for contraceptive use.”