Beyond cervical length: A pilot study of ultrasonic attenuation for early detection of preterm birth risk

Barbara L. McFarlin, Viksit Kumar, Timothy A. Bigelow, Douglas G. Simpson, Rosemary C. White-Traut, Jacques S. Abramowicz, William D. O'Brien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine whether cervical ultrasonic attenuation could identify women at risk of spontaneous preterm birth. During pregnancy, women (n = 67) underwent from one to five transvaginal ultrasonic examinations to estimate cervical ultrasonic attenuation and cervical length. Ultrasonic data were obtained with a Zonare ultrasound system with a 5- to 9-MHz endovaginal transducer and processed offline. Cervical ultrasonic attenuation was lower at 17-21 wk of gestation in the SPTB group (1.02 dB/cm-MHz) than in the full-term birth groups (1.34 dB/cm-MHz) (p = 0.04). Cervical length was shorter (3.16 cm) at 22-26 wk in the SPTB group than in the women delivering full term (3.68 cm) (p = 0.004); cervical attenuation was not significantly different at this time point. These findings suggest that low attenuation may be an additional early cervical marker to identify women at risk for SPTB.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3023-3029
Number of pages7
JournalUltrasound in Medicine and Biology
Volume41
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2015

Keywords

  • Cervical length
  • Cervical remodeling
  • Preterm birth
  • Ultrasonic attenuation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Radiological and Ultrasound Technology
  • Acoustics and Ultrasonics

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