Obstetrical fillet, 1801-1900

1801-1900 in Europe

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Fillet, 19th century, whalebone, nickel-silver and wood

A fillet was a flexible appliance for looping around a baby during childbirth. It was inserted into the birth canal and attached to the child, usually around the head. The physician then gently pulled to assist the delivery. Fillets were one of the first devices assisting childbirth that caused minimal danger to mother and child. This whalebone example gave strength and flexibility. It was slightly more hygienic than other materials used such as silk.

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