Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine

View all recommendations from this society

May 1, 2019

Don’t perform serial cervical length measurement following cerclage placement.

Although progressive cervical shortening after cerclage placement increases the risk of preterm birth, neither overall cervical length nor the length below the stitch correlates well with outcomes. Most importantly, there are currently no additional treatment options for a short cervix after cerclage (e.g., reinforcement suture does not improve outcomes). Although there may be theoretical psychological benefits to the patient and provider to visualize the stitch, there are insufficient data to suggest a clinical benefit of routine post-cerclage serial cervical length measurement.


These items are provided solely for informational purposes and are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a medical professional. Patients with any specific questions about the items on this list or their individual situation should consult their physician.

How The List Was Created

As a national medical specialty society, the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine relies on the input of any number of its committees in the development of various documents. In the case of the items included in this list, the Publications Committee reviewed the literature and evidence from SMFM’s published documents for possible topics. For SMFM’s first set of five recommendations a sub-group of the Committee initially developed a list of 10 items that the Committee then ranked for the top five with input and suggestions by the Society’s Executive Committee. For SMFM’s second set of recommendations, the sub-group of the Committee developed a list of 12 items that the Committee then ranked for the top five, again soliciting input and suggestions by the Society’s Executive Committee. For SMFM’s third set of five recommendations, the sub-group of the Publications Committee developed a list of 10 items that the Committee ranked for the top five, again soliciting input and suggestions by the Society’s Executive Committee. The final lists have been reviewed and approved by the Society’s Document Review Committee and Executive Committee.

SMFM’s disclosure and conflict of interest policy can be found at www.smfm.org

Sources

Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM). McIntosh J, Feltovich H, Berghella V, Manuck T. The role of routine cervical length screening in selected high- and low-risk women for preterm birth prevention. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2016 Sep;215(3):B2-7.

Baxter JK, Airoldi J, Berghella V. Short cervical length after history indicated cerclage: I s a reinforcing cerclage beneficial? Am J Obstet Gynecol 2005;193:1204-7.