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May 7, 1982

Birth Defects and Vaginal Spermicides

JAMA. 1982;247(17):2381-2384. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03320420031027

In a cohort study of 50,282 pregnancies recruited between 1958 and 1965, there were 462 gravidae who used nonmercurial spermicides (mostly nonoxynol-9 and octoxynol); the estimated rate ratio for major malformations was 0.9 (95% confidence limits, 0.6 to 1.6). There were also 889 women who used phenylmercuric acetate (no longer available as a spermicide); the corresponding rate ratio was 0.9 (0.6 to 1.3). Limb reduction deformities, neoplasms, Down's syndrome, and hypospadias did not occur in excess in children exposed to spermicides.

(JAMA 1982;247:2381-2384)