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January 6, 1951

To Prospective Mothers

JAMA. 1951;145(1):57-58. doi:10.1001/jama.1951.02920190059029

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Abstract

This small handbook has been written with the currently-popular purpose of educating prospective mothers in the essentials of physiology and maternal care and, to some extent, pediatrics. In the final analysis, the utility of this effort must depend on a statistical study made among patients who read, a declining element in the American population. Certainly, practitioners will not approve unanimously any single work of this kind—some like a brief pamphlet containing essentials in lay terms, others, a more elaborate volume, and some few old-fashioned ones will persist in talking to their patients.

Most young women, especially those pregnant for the first time, enjoy "reading up" on the subject. Their ability to grasp this knowledge and apply it intelligently may be debated, but a book containing a number of vivid illustrations will enliven that deadly moment when the bridge scores are being compiled. Few will agree that "this cost [of good

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