Cerclage of the Cervix

Cerclage of the cervix is a surgical procedure for an incompetent cervix. An incompetent cervix is a weak cervix that opens up before labor begins. Cerclage of the cervix sews the cervix closed during pregnancy.

LET YOUR CAREGIVER KNOW ABOUT:

  • Allergies to foods or medications.

  • All over-the-counter, prescription, herbal, eye drops and cream medications you are using.

  • Taking illegal drugs or drinking an excessive amount of alcohol.

  • Any recent colds or infections.

  • Past problems with anesthetics or novocaine.

  • Past surgery.

  • History of blood clots or abnormal bleeding problems.

  • Other medical or health problems.

RISKS AND COMPLICATIONS

  • Infection.

  • Bleeding.

  • Rupturing the amniotic sac (membranes).

  • Going into early labor and delivery.

  • Problems with the anesthesia.

  • Infection of the amniotic sac.

BEFORE THE PROCEDURE

  • Do not take aspirin.

  • Do not eat or drink anything 8 hours before the procedure.

  • Do not smoke.

  • If you are being admitted the same day as the procedure, arrive at the hospital at least 60 minutes before the surgery or as directed. During this time, you will sign the necessary forms and get prepared for the surgery.

  • A waiting area is available for family and friends.

PROCEDURE

  • You will be given an IV (intravenous) and medication to relax you.

  • You will be put to sleep with a general anesthetic.

  • A stitch will be placed in and around the cervix to tighten it and keep it closed.

AFTER THE PROCEDURE

  • You will go to a recovery room where you and the baby are monitored.

  • Once you are awake, stable, and taking fluids well, barring other problems, you will be allowed to return to your room.

  • You will usually stay in the hospital overnight.

  • You may get an injection of progesterone to prevent uterine contractions.

  • Have someone drive you home and stay with you for a day or two.

  • You may be given medications to take when you go home.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • Only take over-the-counter or prescriptions medicines for pain, discomfort or fever as directed by your caregiver.

  • Avoid physical activities and exercise until your caregiver says it is okay.

  • Resume your usual diet.

  • Do not douche.

  • Do not have sexual intercourse until your caregiver tells you it is OK.

  • Keep your follow up surgical and prenatal appointments with your caregiver.

SEEK MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You have abnormal vaginal discharge.

  • You develop a rash.

  • You are having problems with your medications.

  • You become lightheaded or feel faint.

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • You develop vaginal bleeding.

  • You are leaking fluid or have a gush of fluid from the vagina.

  • You develop a temperature of 102° F (38.9° C) or higher.

  • You pass out.

  • You have uterine contractions.

  • You feel the baby is not moving as much as usual or cannot feel the baby move.