I am noticing that more of my friends are using the pull-out method when they are in a monogamous relationship versus a hormonal or barrier method. Several of them have asked me how effective the method is at preventing pregnancy so I thought I would share with you what I told them.
If someone used this method their chances of becoming pregnant would be:
- Perfect Use: 4 out of 100 women will become pregnant within a year if they always use it correctly.
- Typical Use: 27 out of every 100 women will become pregnant within a year if they don’t always use it correctly.
You may be asking yourself, “Well how hard is it to pull-out before ejaculation?” It can be very difficult to control when someone is going to ejaculate because a male ejaculates at 15-28 miles per hour. Even if he releases a few drops of semen it can contain millions of sperm. The average ejaculation contains 200-500 million sperm! It only takes one ‘Michael Phelps’ out of the group to make it to the egg. The other concern is even if he pulls out in time, there is the possibility of sperm being in the pre-cum/pre-ejaculate. FYI – pre-ejaculate and semen can contain any infection (ex. Chlamydia or HIV) he has in his body and be spread to his partner. There are a lot of people who have gone back and forth on whether there is sperm in the fluid from the Cowper’s gland. The fluid itself doesn’t contain sperm, but because the fluid is going through the same tube (urethra) it may pick up sperm on its way out that was left from a previous ejaculation.
It is also possible that some men “leak” sperm. According to a small study administered by the NIH, some men repeatedly leak sperm in their pre-ejaculatory fluid while others do not. The study goes on to say that even urinating after ejaculation may not clear the tube and a male could still leak sperm. The study inferred that the use of this method might be more successful for some men because they are less likely to be leakers. In conclusion, if you want to help prevent an unplanned pregnancy or STD, a condom should be worn EVERY time.