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The sordid history of Depo-Provera and the complex working relationship between the FDA, U. S. government, and big pharma.  

Depo-Provera is known as an injectable hormonal birth control method, but few are familiar with its dark and complicated history. Although officially approved by the FDA in 1992, Depo-Provera was used and tested on patients, often without informed consent, since its initial development in the early 1960s.  

Through a fascinating combination of archival materials and interviews, William Green crafts a landmark study of the scientific development, legal cases, policy, and institutional operations related to Depo-Provera. He exposes the drug’s history of testing without informed consent, its negative side effects, and the use of the drug as chemical castration for male sex offenders. The story of Depo-Provera’s complicated history calls for a paradigm shift from approaching pharmaceutical development for profit to a more ethical consideration of contraceptive drugs.  

Contraceptive Risk is a thoroughly researched and engrossing approach to the scientific, political and institutional forces involved in health law and policy, as well as the multifaceted politics of measuring risk.