Issue 2 p29-37 (1963)
An analysis of 10 works published between 1958-62 which provide instructions for use of the temperature method of birth limitation indicates a considerable discrepancy in the advice provided. Couples wishing to conceive would be interested in identifying as closely as possible the moment of ovulation, but couples wishing to avoid conception need to know the times of absolute sterility, and for them, concern with ovulation itself unnecessarily complicates the method. 3 of the 8 authors indicated that it is not necessary to identify the moment of ovulation and that the temperature curve itself would provide sufficient warning of fertile days. 2 authors advised monitoring of other signs of ovulation as well as the temperature curve, and another suggested noting the lowest temperature in preparation for the rise. The sources were also in disagreement as to whether a temperature curve could adequately be read by the couple or whether the constant advice of a trained phisician would be required. All authors were agreed that the time of highest temperature is absolutely sterile, but there was less agreement about how to identify the onset of the sterile period. Some authors argeed that with practice the eye would distinguish the temperature shift, while others called for a temperature of 37 degrees Celsius for 2 days or for the usual highest temperature for 2 days. Disagreement about the days preceding menstruation was even greater. The main cause of conflicting advise is the fact that the authors are not agreed as to how to determine the fertile period, and compounding the difficulty is the tendency to allow too small a margin for variation and exceptional cases.
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