A new quantification system for assessing the degree of acute cervical insufficiency based on physical and sonographic examination

Jee Yoon Park, Kyung Joon Oh, Sukjeong Lee, Nam Kyeong Kim, Young Eun Lee, Ye Hyon Park, Joon Seok Hong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: Acute cervical insufficiency accounts for 10–25 % of all mid-trimester pregnancy losses. However, the definition and description for the degree of acute cervical insufficiency were obscure and different among the many studies. The aim of this study was to suggest a new 4-digit quantification system and to evaluate the outcome according to the new system in women with acute cervical insufficiency. Study Design: A retrospective cohort study was conducted in patients with acute cervical insufficiency who underwent physical examination indicated cervical cerclage. Acute cervical insufficiency was defined as painless external os dilation with prolapsed and/or visible membranes on speculum examination. The status of fetal membranes was described using two values: 1) size of the prolapsed membrane (P, measured using ultrasound); and 2) size of visible fetal membranes (M, evaluated by speculum examination). The status of cervix was described using two values: 1) dilatation of the narrowest os (O, measured by ultrasound); and 2) functional cervical length (C, measured by ultrasound). The patients were divided into 3 groups as follows: Stage I, patients with visible fetal membranes (M > 0) but with a remaining functional cervix (C > 0) (N = 7); stage II, those with visible fetal membranes (M > 0) and a functional cervical length of 0 but without prolapsed membranes (P = 0) (N = 33); and stage III, those with prolapsed membranes (P > 0) (N = 40). Results: 1) Patients who delivered before 34 weeks of gestation had a significantly lower median gestational age at cerclage operation and a significantly higher median P, M, C values than those who delivered at or beyond 34 weeks of gestation(P < 0.01 for gestational age at operation, P and M values; P < 0.05 for C value); 2) The higher the stage based on PMOC quantification system, the greater the risk of preterm delivery before <24, <32, <34, and <37 weeks of gestation (P < 0.001 for all); 3) The neonatal survival rate was 100 % (7/7) for stage I, 93.9 % (31/33) for stage II, and 60 % (24/40) for stage III. Conclusion: The PMOC system was a simple method to describe the individualized conditions and to predict the risk of preterm births in all spectrums of acute cervical insufficiency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)372-378
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology
StatePublished - Jan 2021


  • Cervical insufficiency
  • Prematurity
  • Short cervix
  • Vaginal ultrasound

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