All You Need to Know About Vacuum-Assisted Delivery

I think it’s time to tell a little about vacuum assisted delivery, sometimes called vacuum extraction or vacuum.

Why help is needed?

assisted delivery means that your doctor midwife have to use an instrument of some kind to help deliver your baby through the birth canal.

This type of delivery may be necessary if the second stage of labor is not progressing. You are having contractions and pushing, the cervix is ​​dilated and the baby’s head has fallen, but you and your baby are just not getting anywhere.

suction cup may also be necessary if the heartbeat of your baby indicates that it is or she is having a problem and delivery has to happen immediately.

Your doctor or midwife may choose to use a vacuum device instead of forceps, due to personal preference, but neither type is widely used in childbirth in the United States today.

vacuum extraction is used in less than 3% of births in the United States, according to the National Center for Health Statistics, while the forceps are used in less than 1% of births.

Using any of these methods has been declining. In 1990, more than 5% of births in the United States involved the use of forceps and vacuum extraction below 4% involved.

Using either method of delivery has been greatly reduced due to Caesarean sections have become much more common. At one time, the use of forceps was the only option for delivery of a baby when he had stopped labor.

Until the introduction of anesthesia, sterile surgical technique, and later, blood transfusions, a caesarean section was almost always fatal for the mother and usually treated only after she had died during childbirth; surgery was the only hope of delivering a live child. vacuum extraction is much newer than the use of forceps and labor-stalled work became widespread in the 1950s

How vacuum extraction is done?

If an assisted delivery is needed, your doctor or midwife will discuss the situation with you. If you have not had an epidural, you may have to give some anesthesia. You may also need to have an episiotomy done.

In a vacuum extraction, your healthcare provider will arrive in the birth canal and place a small suction-cup device plastic on top of the baby’s head. This device is linked to a small hand pump produces a vacuum in the cup, connects to the scalp.

This allows your health care provider to get some traction on your baby while pressing. Once the baby’s head appears, the suction is released and removed the cup.

you can see a video of what happens on a mannequin here.

If vacuum extraction fails, it is likely to be prepped for a Caesarean section.


possible risks to the baby include a wound on the scalp or the formation of a temporary inflammation in which joins the suction cup. This swelling goes down within a day or two. serious injury to the baby in a vacuum extraction is very rare.

The risks including the possible need for an episiotomy or a tear in the vag! Na occurring. After delivery, you may have some pain or short term difficulty urinating or emptying your bladder.

These are the complications that can occur with any vaginal delivery, but the risk increases slightly with vacuum extraction. If you have a tear or episiotomy, there is a risk of excessive bleeding or infection.

discuss any possible need for assisted delivery in advance with your obstetrician or midwife. Ask how often forceps or vacuum are used and whether they prefer one method over the other.

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