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SEXUAL STERILIZATION Four Years Experience in Alberta
C. A. Baragar; Geo. A. Davidson; W. J. McAlister; D. L. McCullough
Am J Psychiatry 1935;91:897-923.
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1. The Sexual Sterilization Act of Alberta was assented to March 21, 1928.2. Up to the end of 1933, 288 cases—87 males and 201 females—had been passed by the Eugenics Board, and are dealt with in this report. Of these 206—48 males and 158 females—had at that time been operated on.3. These operations—a vasectomy or salpingectomy—have been followed by no serious sequelæ.4. No complaints have been received as to any change in libido or sex satisfaction, and none are expected.5. Of the 288 cases 156, or 54.2 per cent, were diagnosed as mentally defective; 36, or 12.5 per cent, as mental deficiency with psychosis and 87, or 30.2 per cent, as otherwise psychotic and 9, or 3.1 per cent, as borderline cases including one with an exceedingly bad family history though otherwise normal.6. Social problems, such as immorality, illegitimacy, delinquency, dependence, partial or complete, were prominent features in many of the histories.7. Contrary to frequently expressed fears there is at present no evidence that sterilization will lead to promiscuity or a lowering of moral standards.8. On the other hand, the treatment and training of patients and the maintenance of an adequate follow up system are still essential.9. Facts indicating an hereditary taint or predisposition, in many cases to a startling extent, were found in 60.8 per cent of cases.10. Sexual sterilization is undoubtedly a logical and acceptable method of coping with the great problems of mental disease and defect and their associated problems and should in properly selected and safeguarded cases be as readily resorted to as similar operations for physical disease.

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