The application of a suction cup to the head for helping deliver the infant. This technique performs a similar function as forceps and helps the baby to descend through the birth canal. The vacuum extractor has a soft plastic cup attached to a tube and suction pump. The cup is inserted into the birth canal and attached to the baby's head by suction. Increasing the suction causes a vacuum an the handle of the cup can be used to pull the baby out of the birth canal. The vacuum extractor is more gentle and less damaging to the mother's soft tissue than forceps. However, there are risks with the vacuum extraction. Excessive suction or traction can cause injury to the mother or baby. There is also a limit on the number of pulls that should be made with the suction device attached.