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May 1974

Copper Particles From Intrauterine Contraceptive Device

Arch Dermatol. 1974;109(5):736. doi:10.1001/archderm.1974.01630050070026

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To the Editor.—  Recently, in the process of evaluating the inflammatory response to different surface textures of plastic, our attention was drawn to the article by Dr. Barranco on eczematous dermatitis caused by internal exposure to copper published in the Archives (106:386, 1972). The results of our studies confirmed his observation that small amounts of copper could be released from the copper-containing intrauterine contraceptive device (IUCD) and could essentially be rubbed off the IUCD, as demonstrated by the copper particle apparent in the scanning electron micrograph of a polyethylene IUCD (Dalkon Shield) (Figure). The copper content of the particle was identified by energy dispersive x-ray analysis. The poorly bound copper and barium content of the polyethylene IUCD isScanning electron micrograph of surface of a polyethylene IUCD revealing particle of copper, confirmed by energy dispersive x-ray analysis (original magnification × 1,500). not described in the package insert that accompanies the

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