Vacuum extraction delivery is often called during the second stage of labor. It is the process in which a vacuum extractor is used to pull the baby out of the mother and into the world via the head. Sometimes, childbirth stalls, making the labor process go on for hours. Vacuum extraction delivery is used to avoid this. However, is vacuum extraction delivery common?

Only 2.5% of vaginal births in the US use vacuum extraction. In fact, for every 5 out of 200 deliveries, doctors take the help of vacuum extraction to deliver a child safely. Why such low rates? It is because if a vaginal birth has stalled or poses a threat to the mother, many doctors go for a cesarean. Want to know more? To delve deeper into this topic and provide you with valuable insights, let’s explore the reasons behind the low utilization of vacuum extraction and offer some pregnancy tips for a smooth journey:

What are the situations/indications for Vacuum extraction delivery?

If the baby’s heart rate falls, it could be dangerous for both mother and child. The reason could be a lack of oxygen for the child. In such situations, doctors go for immediate extraction of the baby. To get quick extraction, doctors can go for vacuum extraction delivery. There are many such situations in which vacuum extraction can help. Some of the key ones are:

  • Prolonged Labor

Labor is an extremely painful process. It requires a lot of energy to push the baby outwards. Sometimes, the labor can go on for hours. In such situations, the mother can get extreme exhaustion. This exhaustion generally occurs during the second stage of labor ( In this uterine, contradictions happen, thus pushing the baby through the cervix and birth canal ). Since the mother lacks energy for delivery, vacuum extraction can be used. However, before using it, doctors consider the size and position of the baby and the birth canal’s size.

To provide additional context, you can use a pregnancy calculator to estimate the due date of the baby based on the first day of the mother’s last menstrual period. This estimated due date helps healthcare providers monitor the progress of the pregnancy and plan for the labor and delivery process accordingly.

  • Baby’s Head

Sometimes, the baby’s position is not aligned with the mother’s tailbone. In such cases, the delivery process can halt. To avoid this, forceps and vacuum tubes are used. Forceps are used to rotate or turn the baby’s head in a favorable position. A vacuum is not used during rotation but can help auto-rotate the baby. It happens only when the baby turns itself as gentle traction is applied.

  • Medical Conditions for Mother

While pushing the baby outwards the mother’s blood and brain pressure can increase drastically while pushing the baby outwards. It could pose problems if the mother has certain heart conditions like hypertension or Eisenmenger’s syndrome, neuromuscular disorders, and a history of stroke or aneurysm. Doctors go for vacuum extraction to avoid any harm to the mother or any delays in labor.

What is the recovery process after vacuum extraction delivery?

The recovery process after vacuum extraction delivery can take about six weeks. During this period, take over-the-counter medications like antibiotics and painkillers. Also, make use of pads if you are having vaginal bleeding. If you have any stitches, don’t worry, as they will dissolve on their own. Along with yourself, take care of your baby too. It is because vacuum delivery can have short-term side effects like scalp swelling, jaundice, and bruising.

What are the risks associated with vacuum extraction delivery?

The following are some of the key risks associated with the process of vacuum extraction delivery:

Vaginal Tears – It is common during childbirth. It happens if the baby’s head is larger, thus making the vagina stretch around, causing tears.

Postpartum Bleeding – This happens in rare conditions but is dangerous. It causes heavy bleeding from the vagina after birth. If the uterus doesn’t contract after the baby gets out, the blood vessels associated with it get free, and bleeding occurs.

Pain In Urination – This condition is common and causes discomfort while urinating.+

Scalp Edema – It occurs on the baby. When the pump is attached to the head, it causes scalp swelling for the baby. It is caused due to the increased bilirubin from the breaking of blood cells, causing temporary yellowish on the skin.

Cephalohematoma – It is a blood collection between the baby’s scalp and the skull. Because it is outside the skull, it is considered a minor injury and can be healed in one-two weeks.

Skull Fracture – Babies are fragile, and so are their bones. Putting vacuum extraction on it can result in a skull fracture. However, this case is extremely rare.

Hemorrhage – It occurs in only 0.6% of cases. It causes bleeding in and around the brain, causing brain damage.

Wrapping Up

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