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Books Journals, New Media
October 3, 2001

Obstetrics HistoryThe Obstetrician's Armamentarium: Historical Obstetric Instruments and Their Inventors

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorDavid H.MorseMS, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


Not Available

JAMA. 2001;286(13):1644. doi:10.1001/jama.286.13.1644-JBK1003-4-1

The Obstetrician's Armamentarium: Historical Obstetric Instruments and Their Inventors, by Bryan Hibbard, reviews the evolution of obstetrical instruments from antiquity through the 19th century. In addition to fairly extensive coverage of obstetrical forceps, the book differs from other works on the subject in also covering other obstetric instruments, such as fillets, levers, metreurynters, perforators, and other instruments used for embryotomy.

The author has derived his material extensively from several British collections of obstetrical instruments as well as from historical treatises. The book is organized into chapters that review the chronology of obstetrical instrument development, chapters devoted to important advances in forceps, such as parallel forceps or traction handles, and chapters devoted to other types of instruments. There are copious illustrations and an appendix of measurements of many of the obstetrical forceps discussed.

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