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Lahey Health is now part of Beth Israel Lahey Health

by EBSCO Medical Review Board

Definition

Cervical stenosis is a narrowing of the canal of the cervix. The cervix is the lower part of the uterus (womb). It connects the uterus with the vagina.

Causes

This problem can happen when the canal becomes inflamed. Common causes of this are:

Some people have this problem at birth. It is not known why this happens.

Risk Factors

This problem is more common after menopause.

The risk of this problem is also higher in people:

  • Whose mothers took diethylstilbestrol during pregnancy
  • Have endometriosis

Symptoms

Most people do not have problems. Those who do may have:

  • Painful periods
  • Absent periods
  • Abnormal bleeding
  • Problems getting pregnant

Diagnosis

The doctor will ask about symptoms and past health. Physical and pelvic exams will be done. The doctor may have problems passing tools through the cervix during the pelvic exam. This is often enough to make the diagnosis.

Treatment

People who are not having problems do not need treatment.

If needed, a procedure will be done to widen the canal. Rods will be passed into the canal to stretch the cervix. A mesh tube may also be put into the cervix for a few weeks. It will help to prop open the cervix until the area heals. Tissue may be removed from the cervix.

Prevention

There are no known steps to prevent stenosis of the cervix.

RESOURCES

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists  https://www.acog.org 

Family Doctor—American Academy of Family Physicians  https://www.familydoctor.org 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Health Canada  https://www.canada.ca 

The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada  https://www.sogc.org 

References

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). The Use of Hysteroscopy for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Intrauterine Pathology: ACOG Committee Opinion, Number 800. Obstet Gynecol. 2020 Mar;135(3):e138-e148.

Cervical stenosis. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: https://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/gynecology-and-obstetrics/miscellaneous-gynecologic-disorders/cervical-stenosis. Accessed March 4, 2021.

Hysteroscopy. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/procedure/hysteroscopy. Accessed March 4, 2021.

Stenosis of the uterine cervix. Radiopaedia—Radiological Society of North America website. Available at: https://radiopaedia.org/articles/stenosis-of-the-uterine-cervix?lang=us. Accessed March 4, 2021.

Revision Information