Assisted vaginal delivery is a method of childbirth whereby specific instruments are used to assist in the delivery of a baby through the mother’s vagina.
It is a common practice in obstetrics and can help reduce the time of labor, risk of complications, and risks to mother and baby. But is assisted vaginal delivery safe?
What is assisted vaginal delivery?
Assisted vaginal delivery is the process of a doctor or midwife using special instruments to help deliver a baby through the mother’s birth canal.
Assisted vaginal delivery may be recommended if the mother is not able to push her baby out naturally or if the baby is too large to pass through the birth canal.
Examples of instruments used to assist with delivery include forceps and vacuum extractors. It is important to note that assisted vaginal delivery does not mean a cesarean section (C-section) or a surgical delivery.
Types of Assisted Vaginal Delivery
Assisted vaginal delivery is a type of delivery in which the clinician helps guide the baby out of the birth canal. This is usually achieved by using an instrument to apply gentle pressure to the mother’s abdomen and/or using forceps or a vacuum extractor. There are two main types of assisted vaginal deliveries:
- Dorceps-assisted delivery – the delivery involves the use of a pair of forceps to help guide the baby’s head through the birth canal.
- Vacuum-assisted delivery – the delivery involves the use of a suction cup to help guide the baby’s head through the birth canal.
Both types of assisted vaginal delivery have been proved safe for both mother and baby. But there are certain risks and side effects that need to be taken into consideration before committing to this type of delivery.
Image form Shutterstock
Benefits and risks of assisted vaginal delivery
Assisted vaginal delivery is a safe and non-invasive procedure that involves using a vacuum device or forceps to help guide the baby out of the birth canal.
This procedure is typically used when the mother is experiencing difficulty during labor, or the baby is not in the ideal position for vaginal delivery.
- reducing the risk of injury to the baby or mother
- decreasing the risk of cesarean section
- providing comfort and support to both the mother and the baby during the delivery process
- cost-effective alternative to a cesarean section and it has a much shorter recovery time.
- maternal hemorrhage
- injury to the baby and mother
- the need for a cesarean section
- fetal distress
In addition, the use of instruments during this procedure may increase the risk of adverse perinatal outcomes. Such as low Apgar scores, neonatal seizures, and admission to a neonatal intensive care unit. As with any medical procedure, it is important to discuss the potential risks with your doctor before proceeding.
When it is administered?
Image from Shutterstock
It should only be administered when the mother is physically unable to deliver the baby on her own. It is usually done when the baby is at least 35 weeks of gestational age, the mother is unable to push, or the baby is in distress.
During this procedure, the doctor uses either forceps or a vacuum extractor to help the baby descend and pass through the birth canal.
The doctor will use the instrument to grasp the baby’s head and help guide it out of the birth canal. This procedure is a safe and effective way to deliver a baby when the mother is unable to do so on her own.
Preparing for AVD
Preparing for an assisted vaginal delivery is an important step in the delivery process. Your doctor may suggest that you make certain changes to your diet and lifestyle. So that you can reduce any complications that may arise during the delivery.
For example, you may be asked to eat a balanced and nutritious diet, exercise regularly and avoid any medications that can increase the risk of complications.
It’s also important to be aware of any risks associated with assisted vaginal delivery so that you can make an informed decision.
What to expect you can expect?
Image from Shutterstock
Duringt this procedure, your healthcare provider will use forceps or a vacuum extractor to help the baby out. The healthcare provider will use gentle pressure to guide the baby’s head out and will then use the forceps or vacuum to help guide the baby out the rest of the way.
This process typically takes a few minutes and the healthcare provider will support the baby’s head. To ensure that it is delivered safely. After the baby is delivered, the umbilical cord will be cut and the baby will be examined and weighed.
Aftercare following this procedure is just as important as the delivery itself. It is essential that the mother is closely monitored in the first few days after the delivery to ensure that there are no complications.
You should closely monitor your bleeding and temperature, and should immediately report any signs of infection. Such as fever, chills, and pain.
You should also stay in contact with your healthcare providers through follow-up appointments. So that you can ensure that you and your baby are both healthy and healing properly.