Vacuum extraction

An obstetric procedure to facilitate the delivery of a baby. It may be used if the second stage of labour (see childbirth) is prolonged, if the mother becomes exhausted, or if the baby shows signs of fetal distress. Vacuum suction techniques are also used to perform early abortions. The vacuum extraction instrument consists of a suction cup connected to a vacuum bottle. The suction cup is placed on the baby’s head in the birth canal, and the vacuum machine sucks the baby’s scalp into the cup. The obstetrician draws the baby out of the mother’s vagina by gently pulling on the cup with each uterine contraction. The baby is born with a swelling on the scalp, but this disappears after a few days, usually without treatment.


Online Medical Dictionary: Your essential reference to over 5000 medical terms.