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Development of an Ultrasonic Method to Detect Cervical Remodeling in Vivo in Full-Term Pregnant Women

      Abstract

      The objective of this study was to determine whether estimates of ultrasonic attenuation could detect changes in the cervix associated with medically induced cervical remodeling. Thirty-six full-term pregnant women underwent two transvaginal ultrasonic examinations separated in time by 12 h to determine cervical attenuation, cervical length and changes thereof. Ultrasonic attenuation and cervical length data were acquired from a zone (Zonare Medical Systems, Mountain View, CA, USA) ultrasound system using a 5–9 MHz endovaginal probe. Cervical attenuation and cervical length significantly decreased in the 12 h between the pre-cervical ripening time point and 12 h later. The mean cervical attenuation was 1.1 ± 0.4 dB/cm-MHz before cervical ripening agents were used and 0.8 ± 0.4 dB/cm-MHz 12 h later (p < 0.0001). The mean cervical length also decreased from 3.1 ± 0.9 cm before the cervical ripening was administered to 2.0 ± 1.1 cm 12 h later (p < 0.0001). Cervical attenuation and cervical length detected changes in cervical remodeling 12 h after cervical ripening administration.

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