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Cervical Cerclage

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 6, 2024.

What do I need to know about cervical cerclage?

Cervical cerclage, or cervical stitch, is a procedure to close your cervix during pregnancy. Cerclage may help prevent premature delivery of your baby. The closure may be removed around week 37 of pregnancy. The procedure is usually done through the vagina but can be done through the abdomen.

How do I prepare for the procedure?

Your healthcare provider will talk to you about how to prepare for the procedure. He or she may tell you not to eat or drink anything after midnight on the day of your procedure. He or she will tell you what medicines to take or not take on the day of your procedure.

What will happen during the procedure?

A speculum will be inserted into your vagina to hold it open. You may have a small incision in your abdomen instead. Stitches will be used to close your cervix tightly. If you have an abdominal incision, it will be closed with stitches.

What are the risks of the procedure?

You may bleed more than expected or develop an infection. Your cervix may tear. Your bladder, intestines, or amniotic sac may be damaged. Your risk for a miscarriage may increase. You may have contractions or vaginal bleeding. Your cervix may not be able to open or shorten in preparation for delivery. You may develop a permanent narrowing of your cervix. Your water may break and you may go into labor.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.