Stem pessaries, c 1930.

Image number: 10284378

Stem pessaries, c 1930.

Stem pessaries are intra-uterine devices (IUDs) consisting of a rubber, metal, or glass stem attached to a cup or button to hold the stem upright and prevent it from becoming lost in the uterus. An IUD works after conception by denying a newly fertilized embryo the ability to implant and grow in the lining of the uterus. The IUD is the most inexpensive long-term reversible method of contraception available. Smaller, plastic IUDs are still used today.

Image number:
10284378
Credit:
Science Museum/Science & Society Picture Library
Date taken:
29 October 2003 13:23
Image rights:
Science Museum