Transabdominal stitch this week! Scared!


I have my transabdominal cerclage/stitch booked in for Wed and I'm terrified . I've had so many surgeries in the past, this is my 7th, now I fear the worst.

It was first mentioned after my cone biopsy, they made it sound simple and easy but its actually major! 

I'm grateful to be here and have the choice. 

But also very scared. Has anyone had this or other major abdominal surgery? How bad is the pain? Any recovery tips?



Hi Michelle

I had my cervix/tumour removed at the same time as a tac being put in place so not entirely sure you will be having the same op.

I had keyhole surgery and was home in 24 hours. I was bloated after surgery but actually it was less painful than I was expecting - just keep popping the pain killers and get yourself some good box sets and snacks on stock! I was able to get about the house afterwards but took it very easy and rested properly for about 3 days. By about day 6 I was properly up and about and day 10 I was walking the dog again.

just remeber everyone heals differently so take it easy and I hope you have some family and friends you can call on to help out.

best of luck with it all and keep us posted how you get on xx 


Sorry i can't offer any advice as i haven't had the surgery, however, i have had lletz and cone biopsy and have about 1.5cm of cervix remaining. I had a preconception appointment last week and they have given me the choice of having the TAC or attempting a natural pregnancy knowing it will not be possible for me to have a cervical stitch put in once i am pregnant (not enough cervix and what is left is basically scar tissue). We're really struggling to decide which option is best so would be really interested to hear your story and what prompted you to get the TAC? Good luck with and hope it goes well. 


Hi guys, thanks for your replies. I had the TAC, which is full abdominal surgery, pretty much the same as a caesarean incision. They prefer that to laparoscopic, due to it being quicker and easier for the surgeon. I was brave and did it! 

I had pretty awful post surgery sickness and nausea, which knocked me for six. But that's not normal. Also lots of trouble with my digestion and bowels afterwards, which is fairly expected. The procedure and incision itself though have been fine. I was off painkillers by day 4 pretty much and 2 weeks later am going for short walks and getting around the house very well.

I had Prof Shennan at St Thomas's do my surgery. He's the best. I would strongly recommend the TAC if you have the option. It's by far the most successful way of preventing late miscarriage or premature birth. I think they have over 90% success rates. Once it's there you have no choice but caesarean birth, so have to go through it again for as many babies as you want. 

It's not an easy option by far, but as someone else said to me, nothing is more painful than losing a baby.

Best wishes! Xxx

Also, although it is by far the preference to get it in place before pregnancy, Prof Shennan does the procedure up to 10weeks pregnancy I believe. But there is of course increased risk doing it at that stage, but he said its still very successful. As he's placing it very early it can still be done.

I had 17mm of cervix left after a lletz and cone, for very extensive HG CGIN. I was warned at the time I'd probably need a stitch, but they made it sound bit more simple than it is. 

I was seen at Lewisham hospital for my cone etc. but my consultant had seen a presentation by the Prof and referred me over to St Thomas's. 

I'm about to start IVF now the TAC is in place.

Happy to answer any questions! 

Best wishes xxx

Michelle, I can't tell you how pleased I am to hear from you. I am so sorry that you've been through what you've been through. Our stories are so similar and I have felt so alone until now!! I'm glad it all went well. I have 1.1-1.5cm cervix left after lletz and cone biopsy. I had a miscarriage in Feb at 9 weeks which was not related but prompted me to discuss options with my hospital. They told me about TAC but their opinion is we should try naturally first as I don't quite meet the criteria since I haven't had a second trimester loss. The surgeon at my hospital is quite new so I am seeking a second opinion from prof shennan, my appointment is on 20th June and I'm so nervous. It's really helped hearing your story and especially since he's the one who did your TAC! Do you mind me asking how long it was from your first consultation with him to having the TAC placed?

Jo xx

I'm sorry you've been through all this too! We are warriors and you are not alone! 


So sorry to hear of your loss.

I saw him in Feb and got the surgery in May. It could have been April but I needed a extra thing done and had to wait for another surgeon to be free at the same time. 

He didn't ever mention expecting me to lose a pregnancy first and I think that's a cruel thing to expect of women. The Prof seems to go with the idea that prevention is better and I really hope you get the same response!

He's very nice but efficient, so have your list of questions ready and make sure you get them all answered. His research assistant is truly lovely and helpful too.

I really hope you get the answers that you want. 

Happy to chat more if you have any further questions!