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Z Geburtshilfe Neonatol. 1997 Jul-Aug;201(4):122-7.

[Results of follow-up of mothers with previous surgical "total cervical cerclage" also with reference to neonatal data].

[Article in German]

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Institut für Perinatale Medizin Berlin-Neukölln.


From August 16, 1993 until March 6, 1995 a study was conducted at the Department of Obstetrics at the Berlin-Neukoelln Womens Hospital to evaluate the status of patients who had previously undergone total cervical occlusion (TCO) for the prevention of late abortion and premature birth. Special consideration was given to the possible effects of TCO on the patients' gynecologic status, the psychological circumstances associated with TCO and the developmental status of the infants. Fifty-four women participated in the study, their ages ranging between 26 and 53 years. The mean time-span between the TCO procedure and the present study was five years and five months. In the 54 women undergoing TCO, a total of 73 such procedures were performed. An extensive early TCO was performed in 63% and an extensive late TCO in 20.5%. The gestational age at the time of delivery was > or = 37 + 0 weeks in 67.1% of the women. More than half of the patients (54.9%) experienced a normal spontaneous vaginal delivery. In total, 84.5% of the infants were delivered vaginally; thus the cesarean section rate was only 15.5%. Regarding the patients' medical histories, the majority of the patients had no pathological findings on routine pap smears and pelvic examinations and, similarly, they had no complaints of menstrual irregularities. Only 10 patients (18.5%) underwent gynecological surgery in the interim; in these patients, the most common reason for surgery (in four cases) was sterilisation. The findings during speculum examination were tabulated. The majority of the patients (96%) exhibited a normal multiparous cervical portio. In 55% of the patients there was no evidence of scarring of the cervical portio. In 25% of the patients there was minor cervical scarring, in 13.5% it was moderate and in 5.8% it was severe. Except for a single case, the patients showed no evidence of vaginitis. During bimanual palpation on pelvic examination, in 82.7% of the patients the cervix was found to be at least 2 cm in length, a closed external cervical os was palpated in 65.4%, and an anteflexed/anteverted uterus that was normal in size and form was noted in 46.2%. In 95.4% of the patients, original squamous epithelium was seen colposcopically. The psychosocial status of each patient was evaluated on an individual basis. After taking all of the psychosocial circumstances associated with such a high-risk pregnancy into consideration, all the patients giving birth to a living infant described that event as a positive experience. However, this was not the case in the two patients whose premature infants did not survive. In 74.1% of the patients, the relationship with their domestic partners was described as "unchanged" when compared to the status of their relationship during the preceding pregnancy without TCO. The patients undergoing TCO described their own psychological status as "frequently strained" (61.1%) and "disturbed" (9.3%) antepartum. Postpartum, 90.7% of the patients described their psychological status as "good". In total, there were 74 births in the 54 patients included in this follow-up study. Of these 51 (68.9%) were living term infants, one stillborn (1.4%) and 22 (29.7%) premature infants. One infant weighed less than 1.000 grams while 4 (5.3%) weighed between 1.000 and 1.499 grams. Postpartum, 45.5% of the premature infants and 19.6% of the term infants were hospitalized. The primary indications for the transfer of the premature neonates were intensive care, hyperbilirubinemia and adaptation problems. The physical, emotional and mental development was unimpaired in 91.4% of the children. A capability for good social integration was displayed in 95.7% of the children. Based on the current investigation, it may be concluded that the total cervical occlusion procedure has no significant long-term negative effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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