Does cervical cerclage prevent preterm delivery in patients with a short cervix? Academic Article uri icon


  • Objective: Our purpose was to determine whether cerclage placement in women with a short cervix on transvaginal ultrasonography reduces the rate of preterm delivery. Study Design: A retrospective cohort study identified patients with an ultrasonographic short cervix (cervical length ≤15 mm) between 14 and 24 weeks’ gestation. Cerclage placement was performed at the discretion of the attending physician. Clinical characteristics and outcome with and without cerclage were compared. Results: Seventy patients met inclusion criteria; 25 (36%) underwent cerclage placement. Patients managed with cerclage had a lower gestational age at diagnosis (19.6 weeks vs 21.3 weeks, P < .01) but had a similar median cervical length, presence of funneling, and a history of cervical surgery, in comparison with those managed without cerclage. The rate of spontaneous preterm delivery was not different between groups. Patients with cerclage had a higher rate of preterm premature rupture of membranes than those without cerclage (65.2% vs 36.4%, P < .05). Conclusion: Cervical cerclage in patients with a short cervix did not reduce the rate of spontaneous preterm delivery and increased the risk of preterm premature rupture of membranes. (Am J Obstet Gynecol 2001;184:1325-31.)

publication date

  • January 1, 2001