£2000 bounty—contraceptives (and UTI) literature review

I would like if there was a well-researched LessWrong post on the pros and cons of different contraceptives. - Same deal with a good post on how to treat or prevent urinary tract infection, although I’m less excited about that.

  • I and a friend would be willing to pay some of our private money for this to get done. Up to £1000 each. Open to considering higher amounts, but depending on the post, it might also end up (much) lower.

    • Depending on your track record, this could be paid in advance as a commission or as a bounty or a mix. The amount would depend on the quality.

    • Before you put serious time and effort into this, please reach out to me, so we can set expecations for the payment.

  • I’m also looking for people to chip in (either to offer more money or just to take some of the monetary burden off me!)

  • £40 bounty if you refer someone who ends up doing this and does it well. If you include some information that spares me a lot of work figuring out whether the person is likely to do a good job, that’s highly appreciated!


Examples of the type of content that I would like to see included:

  • Clarity on the contraception and depression question. e.g. apparently theory says that hormonal IUDs should give you less depression risk than pills, but in empirical studies, it looks like it’s the other way around? Can I trust the studies?

  • Some perspective on the trade-offs involved. E.g. maybe I can choose between a 5% increased chance of depression vs. a 100% increased chance of blood clots. But maybe basically no one gets blood clots anyway, and then I’d rather take the increased blood clot risk! But because the medical system cares more about death than me, my doctor will never recommend me the blood clot one, or something like that.

  • If there wasn’t already a post on this (but I think there is), info on that it’s totally fine to not take 7 day pill breaks every months, but that you can just take the pill all the time. (Although I think it might be recommended to take a short break every X months)

  • Some realistic outlook on how much pain and effects on menstruation I should expect

  • Various potential benefits from contraceptives aside from contraception

  • Conditional advice of the form “if you have a history of [depression/​painful periods/​irregular sleep rhythm...], you might want to try out X first. If X has adverse effect Y for Z number of months, my next best recommendation is A”

  • Interactions with other drugs and diseases, e.g. modafinil, selegiline, endometriosis

  • How long to try out a particular contraceptive before switching if it initially causes pain/​depression

  • 1-year discontinuation rate with most commonly cited reasons for discontinuation

  • Some information on vasectomies and sterilization, including reversibility (and whether to get endometrial ablation while getting sterilized: What’s the productivity-risk of chronic pain trade-off?)

  • Comparison of subtypes of different types of contraceptives, e.g. the longer-lasting IUD vs. the IUD for people who haven’t had children, yet. What’s the convenience vs. pain/​period trade-off here?

  • Any weird, experimental male contraceptives that you can get your hands on if you really try—and how

  • On the UTI side: Is the cranberry stuff a myth or is it a myth that it’s a myth or is it a myth that it’s a myth that it’s a myth?

I don’t think a good post would have to cover all of these, and I admit some of these are weird details, but those are the type of things I’d be interested in.

Alternatively: If there actually already are really good resources on this topic out there, please let me know!