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A few weeks ago, a zealous student of midwifery, and an original thinker of prominence, wrote the following sentence with reference to a rule of practice of vital importance in midwifery:
"I regard the rule (not to apply the forceps till the os is completely dilated), long held by the ablest men, to be entirely erroneous, and capable of doing much harm to womankind and to the obstetric art. It is part and parcel, in my judgment, of those other rules, which have, by a singular want of knowledge of the great range of usefulness of the forceps, hampered mankind in its use.
"I have no doubt that Chamberlen used the forceps as Lusk does, so far as his instrument allowed him; and two hundred years after him, in the face of thousands of facts to the contrary, we are still hampering the instrument with rules invented in the closet,
COMPLETE DILATATION OF THE CERVIX UTERI, AN ESSENTIAL CONDITION TO THE TYPICAL FORCEPS OPERATION. JAMA. 1885;V(9):238–240. doi:10.1001/jama.1885.02391080014004
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