If you are near delivery and a healthcare provider has decided you need to be induced, the use of Cervidil may be recommended. This vaginal insert is placed near the cervix and helps relax and soften the cervix to allow the baby to pass through. It is a manufactured version of a hormone that is found naturally in the body.
What Is Cervidil Used For?Cervidil® (dinoprostone vaginal insert) is a prescription medication used to start or continue cervical ripening in pregnant women who are close to delivery. It is used when there is a medical reason to induce labor. Cervidil is a thin, flat vaginal insert. It is placed near the cervix, and removed when labor begins or when it is no longer needed.
The cervix is the lower portion of the uterus, located at the top of the vagina. Throughout pregnancy, the cervix remains closed and firm. This is important to help the developing fetus remain in the uterus. As the body prepares for labor and delivery, however, the cervix will thin and soften. This process, known as cervical ripening, is necessary for the cervix to dilate and allow the fetus to pass through.
Cervidil is used to bring about cervical ripening, often so labor can be induced. Labor induction is when contractions are started artificially, using medications or another medical procedure. In general, labor is induced when there are risks of continuing a pregnancy until labor can occur naturally. For example, labor may be induced when:
- It is not progressing as expected
- Your health is at risk
- Your baby's health is at risk.
The most common reasons for induction include being overdue (beyond 41 weeks pregnant) and having pregnancy-induced hypertension (see Hypertension in Pregnancy).
Prostaglandins are often used to bring about cervical ripening. Prostaglandins are hormone-like substances that occur naturally in the body. Cervidil contains the prostaglandin dinoprostone, which is also available as a gel (Prepidil®). Misoprostol (Cytotec®) is an example of another prostaglandin medication.