Emergency cervical cerclage is one of the treatment options for the reduction of preterm birth. The aim of this study is to assess neonatal outcome after cerclage with special focus on adverse effects in very low birth weight infants.
Retrospective cohort study. Classification of cerclages in history-indicated (HIC, n = 38), ultrasound-indicated (UIC, n = 29) and emergency/ physical examination-indicated (PEIC, n = 33) cerclage. Descriptive analysis of pregnancy and neonatal outcome (admission to NICU, duration of hospitalization, respiratory outcome (intubation, CPAP, FiO2max), neonatal complications (ROP, IVH)). Statistical comparison of perinatal parameters and outcome of neonates <1500 g after cerclage with a birth weight matched control group.
Neonates <1500 g after PEIC show significantly impaired outcome, i.e. prolonged respiratory support (total ventilation in days, CPAP, FiO2max) and higher rates of neonatal complications (IVH ≥ II, ROP ≥ 2). Placental pathologic evaluation revealed a significantly higher rate of chorioamnionitis (CAM) after PEIC. Neonates <1500 g after UIC or HIC show no significant difference in neonatal complications or CAM.
In our study PEIC is associated with adverse neonatal outcome in infants <1500 g. The high incidence of CAM indicates a potential inflammatory factor in the pathogenesis. Large well-designed RCTs are required to give conclusive answers to the question whether to prolong or to deliver.