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2006/49/1 Ovarian monitor with attached transformer and (2) assay tubes, Ovulation Meter model OM5, plastic / metal / electrical, developed by Professor James B Brown, made by St. Michael NFP Services Pty Ltd, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, c. 1990-1994. Click to enlarge.

Ovarian monitor for tracking a womans fertility cycle

Made
'Natural family planning' (NFP) is a method of birth control based on a woman's knowledge of the phases of her ovulation cycle, which recurs more or less monthly. During each cycle a woman goes through a 'fertile period' and an 'infertile period'. As a means of contraception (or 'pregnancy avoidance') a couple will refrain from having sexual intercourse during the fertile period. Also known as 'periodic abstinence', natural family planning is a method chosen by many couples who do not wish to …

Summary

Object No.

2006/49/1

Object Statement

Ovarian monitor with attached transformer and (2) assay tubes, Ovulation Meter model OM5, plastic / metal / electrical, developed by Professor James B Brown, made by St. Michael NFP Services Pty Ltd, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, c. 1990-1994

Physical Description

Ovarian monitor, Ovulation Meter model OM5, for home use in natural family planning and assisted reproduction, plastic, developed by Professor James B Brown, made by St. Michael NFP Services Pty Ltd, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, c. 1990-1994

The Brown ovarian monitor (also called an Ovulation Meter) is an electrically powered device, intended to be used at home by a woman to assist in the charting of her ovarian cycle by analysing the hormones in her urine.

The meter itself is encased in a grey plastic box with a blue face. It has a slot with a hinged lid where a prepared assay tube of urine is inserted, on/off and 5 min/10 min toggle switches, and an LED read-out screen. It is accompanied by two small plastic assay tubes with lids, and a transformer that converts the 240V AC mains supply to 12V DC. The complete home kit would also include a urine-collecting jug, syringes for measuring water and urine, a test tube rack, and airtight storage tins, but these items did not accompany the donation.

The ovarian monitor identifies the beginning and end of the fertile phase of a woman's monthly ovarian cycle, by detecting the oestrogen rise that marks the beginning of fertility and the rise or progesterone at the end of fertility. To do this it utilizes a micrococcus enzyme immunoassay to measure the levels of oestradiol and progesterone metabolites in the urine.

Marks

Wording inscribed on the face of the meter includes:
'Ovulation meter/ Made in Australia for/ St. Michael NFP/ SERVICES PTY. LTD./ Melbourne/ [etc.]'.

On the transformer there is a black and gold manufacturer's label which reads:
'Arlec/ AC ADAPTOR/ INPUT 240V/50Hz/OUTPUT 12V DC/ 500 mA/ [etc.]'.

A white paper sticker on the side of the transformer is printed:
'Dr Barbara Gross, BPharm, MSc, PhD/ Senior Scientific Officer/ Department of Clinical Endocrinology/ Westmead Hospital/ WESTMEAD NSW 2445'.

A second paper sticker is printed:
'Byron & Francine Pirola/ 7 Duke Street/ Kensington NSW 2033'.

Dimensions

Width

72 mm

Depth

124 mm

Production

Notes

An 'ovulation meter' for home use, based on a micrococcus enzyme immunoassay to measure the levels of oestradiol and progesterone metabolites in the urine, was devised by Professor James B. Brown at the Royal Women's Hospital in Melbourne, with prototypes first available to the public in 1986. According to Mr Kevin Smyth of St Michael NFP Services, the 'Ovulation Meter' in the Powerhouse collection is an example of model no. OM5. The model current in 2006 is the OM6.

The various models of the 'Brown Ovulation Meter', as it is sometimes referred to, have been made and distributed by St Michael NFP Services Pty Ltd. This is a small company of five people (in 2006) who work on a voluntary basis with Professor Brown as principal.

Wording inscribed on the face of the OM5 includes: 'Ovulation meter/ Made in Australia for/ St. Michael NFP/ SERVICES PTY. LTD./ Melbourne/ [etc.]'. On the transformer there is a black and gold manufacturer's label which reads: 'Arlec/ [etc.]'.

History

Notes

The OM5 model 'Ovulation Meter' in the Powerhouse collection was lent to the Museum in 1995 for the exhibition 'Taking precautions: the story of contraception'. It was subsequently donated to the permanent collection by The Australian Council of Natural Family Planning.

Source

Credit Line

Gift of the Australian Council of Natural Family Planning, 2006

Acquisition Date

4 April 2006

Cite this Object

Harvard

Ovarian monitor for tracking a womans fertility cycle 2021, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 28 July 2021, <https://ma.as/358428>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/358428 |title=Ovarian monitor for tracking a womans fertility cycle |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=28 July 2021 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}