Vacuum Assisted Delivery: What Is It and How Is It Done
When the baby cannot be pushed out normally during a vaginal delivery, the doctor may try an assisted delivery method. One such birth method is vacuum-assisted delivery, which is the most favored option.
Vacuum-assisted birth is a type of operative vaginal delivery that makes use of a vacuum or a vacuum extractor to assist in bringing the baby down from the birthing canal. The vacuum uses a soft plastic cup, called the ventouse, which is connected to a suction device with a handle. The doctor, or the midwife assisting the labor, use the handle to bring the baby out of the birthing canal.
When you are trying to push the baby out during labor, and the cervix gets fully diluted, an epidural is given or numbing medicine is placed inside the vagina to block the pain. The ventouse is then inserted into the vagina in such a way that it firmly fits the baby’s head.
- Before carrying out a vacuum-assisted delivery, the doctor will check how far down your baby is in the birthing canal. This helps them to place the cup and use the traction carefully.
- You are exhausted after pushing and can no longer do it.
- The baby shows distress and needs to be pulled out earlier.
- If you are at risk due to any medical condition or complication, and you need to avoid stressing yourself by pushing.
- A nonreassuring fetal heart tracing.
What Are The Risks Of Vacuum-Assisted Birth?
When correctly applied, this method poses fewer risks. However, in some cases, there may be some risks for the mother and the baby
Risks for the mother (2):
- Pain in the immediate postpartum period
- Pelvic organ prolapsed and fistula formation
- Tear in the vagina or on the perineum.
- Urinary and fecal incontinence (loss of bowel control)