I think it will pass unquestioned that the sole object of washing out the uterine cavity, or of using the curette within it, post-partum, is for antiseptic purposes. Septicæmia or putrid absorption is possible during the puerperium of every woman. If, therefore, these operations are perfectly harmless, they should be freely performed as a prophylactic measure, and should be heartily endorsed by obstetricians.
If, again, the uterine cavity be the common origin of the septic and inflammatory accidents of the lying-in, again should the curette and the intra-uterine douche be used at the first signals of such abnormal disturbance.
If, however, these operations be dangerous, requiring extreme care and precision; if, further, most of the inflammatory and many of the septic affections of the puerperium have not their origin in the womb; then the use of the intra-uterine douche and the curette should be discountenanced, except in the hands of
KNOX JS. THE USE OF THE CURETTE AND INTRA-UTERINE DOUCHE AFTER LABOR AT TERM. Read before the Chicago Medical Society, September 19, 1887. JAMA. 1887;IX(20):614–617. doi:10.1001/jama.1887.02400190006001b
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