Comparison of postpartum sonographic findings after uneventful vaginal and cesarean section deliveries

Isil Uzun Cilingir, Cenk Sayin, Havva Sutcu, Ebru Alici, Cihan Inan, Selen Erzincan, Cem Yener, Fusun Varol

Affiliation and address for correspondence
J Ultrason 2018; 18: 310–315
DOI: 10.15557/JoU.2018.0045

Objective: To prospectively determine the sonographic findings of the postpartum uterus 24 hours after vaginal delivery and cesarean section. Methods: Women who had uneventful vaginal delivery or cesarean section from July 2015 to May 2018 in a tertiary care hospital were prospectively included. Uterine lengths, endometrium, amout of free fluid, the distance between the uterine fundus-promontorium and uterine fundus-L5 were evaluated 24 hours after delivery. Results: The mean (min–max) endometrial thickness in the vaginal delivery and cesarean section groups were 13.3 (4–25) and 12.4 (4–29) mm, respectively. Fundus-cervix length was significantly higher in the vaginal delivery group compared to the cesarean section group (184.05 ± 16.8 vs 163.6 ± 6.7 mm, p <0.001). The measurements of anterior and anterior-posterior walls of the uterus, anteroposterior uterine length and uterine width were similar in both groups. Promontorium-fundus length was significantly higher in patients who delivered vaginally than those by cesarean section (123.3 ± 13.6 vs 108.7 ± 23.3 mm, p = 0.005). Conclusion: The measurement of L5-fundus distance is a simple and effective technique to evaluate the size of the uterus. Homogenous endometrium up to 30 mm in asymptomatic patients may be a normal finding 24 hours after delivery. The results of this study may be helpful in the decision-making process in cases of early postpartum hemorrhage or hemodynamic instability.

sonography, postpartum, cesarean delivery, postpartum bleeding