The advantages of forceps compared to vacuum extraction are:

  • Faster application
  • Faster extraction
  • No need for synchronized traction
  • More vigorous traction may be applied
    • For good and bad!


  • Determine rotational position of head
    • Palpate fontanelles
    • Feel for an ear
  • If exact position of the heads rotation is undetermined do not apply forceps

Two options:

  1. Apply the left branch (mothers left) first
    • Then the right branch over the left
  2. Apply the right branch first
    • Then the left branch under the right.
Forceps I
Forceps II