Vacuum Birth: When is It Necessary and Does the Baby’s Head Shape Recover?

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A baby naturally tries to be born with his or her own power. However, if birth does not happen as expected, “suction delivery” may be necessary.

There are mothers who may get worried about pulling the head of their baby using an instrument, and ask questions such as, “Will it distort my baby’s head shape?”, or “Will the procedure be a failure or a success?”.

Therefore, we have summarized some basic information about suction delivery.

What kind of method is vacuum birth?

Suction or Vacuum birth is a method in which a cup made of metal or silicone is placed on the baby’s head and pulled by applying suction pressure. After opening the perineum and spreading the birth canal to put the instruments in place, the suction cup is attached to the baby’s head and the baby is pulled out with the help of the mother.

Suction or Vacuum delivery is an emergency measure used under certain conditions when there is a risk to the mother or when the baby’s health is threatened during childbirth.

Cases when vacuum delivery becomes necessary

· Weak labor pain and when it does not progress due to muscle fatigue
· When the mother does not have enough dampness due to complications
· When the baby does not come down into position due to rotation abnormality, etc.
· When there is a danger of fetal distress, such as a decrease in the heart sound of a baby

Conditions for suction or vacuum delivery

· The uterine ostium is fully opened, or close to a state where it is fully open
· The head of the baby has come down to the position within the reach of the suction cup
· The baby’s head is too big for the mother’s pelvis, the passage of the birth canal is not physically inconvenient
· It is breaking water
· Ready for transition to Caesarean section

If suction labor does not result in birth, the process will switch to forceps delivery or cesarean section.

What is the impact on your baby?

Since the baby will have his or her head sucked out, it will have an irregular shape like a slightly stretched head, but do not worry as it will recover naturally. In addition, the following symptoms may be seen due to the effect of suction birth.

Influence on babies

· Damage due to parturition: the scalp may be scratched or peeled off
· Head blood type: a part of the periosteum is peeled off, the blood accumulates, and it becomes a bumpy Cobb shape
· Capital bleeding in the hat shape: bleeding occurs between periosteum and hat like aponeurosis
· Bloody stomach: swelling caused by pressure at birth is likely to be larger than normal vaginal delivery
· Intracranial bleeding: bleeding occurs in the skull interior
· Jaundice: Sometimes accompanied by the above symptoms

If your baby’s head becomes irregularly shaped or bumpy, you will naturally be worried. However, since most of these cases will cure naturally, there is no need to treat or to worry about the after-effects of suction delivery. However, consult with your doctor immediately if your suspect something clearly wrong, such as the baby refusing to drink milk and not feeling energetic.

You may need to know the advantages and disadvantages to have suction delivery. And please consult with your doctor.

In addition, vacuum extraction that brings out the baby by inserting an instrument can have effects on the mother’s body such as on the perineum and the birth canal, laceration of the bladder, and bleeding.

Aspiration labor is a treatment to which insurance may be applied

The fee added by aspiration labor differs depending on the maternity clinic or hospital, but insurance is applied when aspiration labor is required due to troubles during delivery. At this time, not only the expenses of aspiration labor but also the perineal incision and sutures are included in insurance medical treatment.

However, be aware of cases when insurance is not applied. For example, when sucking and birthing is done for prevention, normal vaginal delivery has resulted.


Even if your pregnancy is good and the baby is growing healthily, you never know what will happen during childbirth. Even if aspiration labor is required, the most important thing is to survive the birth safely for both the mother and baby. Since many mothers get concerned about the shape of the head and possible injury, let’s trust the judgment of the doctor. Build a relationship of trust with doctors and don’t hesitate to ask questions and express your worries.

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