Abstract Cervical insufficiency can be defined by a combination of obstetric history, cervical dilation on exam, and/or short cervical length in women with prior preterm birth. Options for mechanical intervention include cerclage and pessary. There is evidence to support the benefit of a cervical cerclage in women with singleton gestations who have a diagnosis of cervical insufficiency either based on second trimester painless cervical dilatation leading to recurrent early preterm births, or a history of early spontaneous preterm birth and a second trimester transvaginal ultrasound short cervical length or cervical dilation on exam. For women with multiple gestations, the benefit of a cerclage is uncertain, and further study is warranted. The pessary has also been studied for mechanical prevention of preterm birth in various populations, however the results so far have been mixed and warrants further study prior to routine use.
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