While the gonococcus is known to be responsible for most cases of ophthalmia neonatorum, there are a number of cases in which bacterial examinations for the gonococcus yield negative results. These cases have been ascribed to various causes, such as chemical irritants, certain organisms and the so-called inclusion virus. It seemed that a systematic study of a series of such cases with a view to determining this etiology was worth while.
In a review of the literature, Gabrielides1 reported that Augé, in 1906, in a series of 95 cases of nongonorrheal ophthalmia of the newborn found no organisms in 77, pneumococcus in 10, streptococcus in 3, Koch-Weeks' bacillus in 3, Pfeiffer's bacillus in 1 and an undetermined organism in 1. Haupt,2 in a series of 62 cases of ophthalmia of the new-born, found 45 due to the gonococcus, 1 to pseudo-influenza, 1 to Bacillus