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Risks related to use of forceps during deliveries

As many Pittsburgh mothers are well aware, childbirth does not always go as expected. In this case doctors may opt to use tools like forceps, which can actually result in a number of very serious medical complications. Knowing about these risks is of the utmost importance to ensure the health of your baby remains top-priority during a delivery.

According to WebMD, doctors often use tools to assist during difficult deliveries. These typically include forceps, or in some cases medical staff may use a device known as a vacuum extractor. While these are thought to be safe, they can sometimes cause significant injury to unborn babies, with occasionally tragic consequences.

In terms of forceps, this tool is used expedite a delivery when the mother is in a great deal of pain or the baby is in the wrong position. Forceps are inserted into the birth canal and clamp down on the baby’s head to either turn the baby into a more favorable position or pull the baby out. Use of forceps is accompanied by a numbing agent and an incision known as an episiotomy (taking place between the anus and the vagina).

However, use of forceps is associated with quite a few risks. The Mayo Clinic details some of these potential complications, including the risk of a uterine rupture. In this case, a tear in the uterine wall may result in the baby and/or placenta being pushed into the abdominal cavity. A delivery using forceps can also result in anemia if there is a great deal of blood lost during the surgery. Pelvic muscles can also be weakened when forceps are used, which may lead to a prolapse of pelvic organs.  

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