DefinitionBy Mayo Clinic Staff
Cervical cerclage is a procedure in which stitches are used to close the cervix during pregnancy to help prevent pregnancy loss or premature birth. The cervix is the lower part of the uterus that opens to the vagina.
Cervical cerclage can be done through the vagina (transvaginal cervical cerclage) or, less commonly, through the abdomen (transabdominal cervical cerclage). Typically, the stitches are removed at around week 37 of pregnancy.
Your health care provider might recommend cervical cerclage if your cervix is at risk of opening before your baby is ready to be born or, in some cases, if your cervix begins to open too early. However, cervical cerclage isn't appropriate for everyone. It can cause serious side effects and doesn't always prevent premature birth. Understand the risks of cervical cerclage and whether the procedure might benefit you and your baby.
March 17, 2015
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- American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) Committee on Practice Bulletins — Obstetrics. ACOG Practice Bulletin No.142: Cerclage for the management of cervical insufficiency. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Obstetrics and Gynecology. 2014;123:372.