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Swedish nuclear physicist invents world's first smartphone app certified as contraception

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Posted at 11:14 AM, Aug 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-15 11:14:41-04

A Swedish nuclear physicist tired of her pills and fluctuating hormones has invented the world’s first smartphone app to be approved as a contraceptive, the BBC reports

Natural Cycles got approved for European use in February by German inspection agency Tuv Sud, and its developer Elina Berglund Scherwitzl told The Verge she hopes it’ll one day be certified in every country around the globe.

A yearly subscription costs $79.99 and includes a thermometer so women can measure and log their daily body temperature. A complex algorithm uses that data to determine whether or not a woman is fertile on a particular day, informing them which days to be particularly careful should they not wish to become pregnant. 

Of course, this tech-driven method won’t prevent sexually transmitted infections or stop women from having unprotected sex while ovulating. More than 200,000 women in 161 countries have given the method a go though, The Verge reports.

However, the American Food and Drug Administration has not yet cleared, granted or approved any fertility smartphone apps for the market, FDA spokeswoman Deborah Kotz told The Verge.

For that to happen, they’ll need rigorous clinical studies and real-world data to examine “the benefits and risks of medical devices, including how they are used by health care providers and patients,” Kotz said.