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The role of ultrasound-indicated cerclage in triplets

, : The role of ultrasound-indicated cerclage in triplets. Ultrasound in Obstetrics & Gynecology 34(1): 43-46

Preterm delivery is the leading cause of major perinatal morbidity and mortality associated with triplet pregnancies. The objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of ultrasound-indicated cervical cerclage in triplet pregnancies that are diagnosed with cervical shortening on biweekly transvaginal sonography (TVS). A retrospective review of all triplets who were followed with biweekly TVS for measurement of cervical length was conducted. Cervical shortening was defined as cervical length <or= 2.5 cm. Outcomes of interest included cervical cerclage placement, gestational age at delivery and birth weight. In our population of 24 triplet pregnancies, 13 had cervical shortening. Of these, 54% underwent cervical cerclage at a mean gestational age of 20 weeks. Overall, patients without cervical shortening delivered on average 17 days later than those with cervical shortening (32 + 2 weeks vs. 29 + 6 weeks, P = 0.034). Moreover, infants of patients without cervical shortening weighed on average 456 g more at birth than did those with cervical shortening (1751 g vs. 1295 g, P = 0.039) and had a lower percentage of very low birth weight infants (30.3% vs. 69.2%, P = 0.002). Within the subset of patients with cervical shortening, there was no statistical difference in any of the outcomes studied between patients who underwent cervical cerclage and those who did not. Triplet pregnancies complicated by cervical shortening diagnosed on biweekly TVS surveillance do not appear to benefit from placement of cervical cerclage, based on assessment of gestational age at delivery, birth weight and incidence of very low birth weight infants.


PMID: 19565536

DOI: 10.1002/uog.6387

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