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February 16, 1976

Transport of Bacteria by the Dalkon Shield Tail

Author Affiliations

The Population Council The Rockefeller University New York

JAMA. 1976;235(7):704-705. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03260330014005

To the Editor.—  In reference to the letter of Dr Katayama (233:950,1975) concerning the "Escherichia coli Transport by Dalkon Shield String," I was glad to see supportive evidence for our in vitro experiments. However, I assume that at the time his letter was written, Dr Katayama was not aware of our subsequent in vivo study in which the terminal segments (proximal end of the tail beyond the double knot at the base of the Dalkon Shield and normally located inside the uterus) of Dalkon Shield tails removed from patients were examined.1In this investigation, the terminal ends of the tails from 35 Dalkon Shields were examined either by phase contrast microscopy or by transmission electron microscopy. The duration of intrauterine device use ranged from five months to four years for these 35 patients. The Dalkon Shields with their attached tails were placed in electron microscopy fixative immediately after their