Sexual and reproductive health

New, low-cost instrument for assisted vaginal delivery

New instrument for assisted vaginal delivery

A new low-cost device (Odon Device) for delivery of the fetus during prolonged second stage labour won a “Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development” Award for its ''potential to save the lives of mothers and newborns at the time of birth". This innovative device may be safer and easier to apply than forceps/vacuum extractor for assisted deliveries, and a safe alternative to some caesarean sections in settings with limited access to surgical capacity and human resource constraints.

Complications due to prolonged second stage of labour include potentially fatal maternal (hemorrhage, infection) and newborn complications (birth asphyxia and trauma).

Odon Device

The Odon Device, invented by Mr Jorge Odón from Argentina, is an instrument to deliver the fetus when complications occur during the second stage of labour. The device is made of film-like polyethylene material and may be potentially safer and easier to apply than forceps and vacuum extractor (contraindicated in cases of HIV infection) for assisted deliveries. By reducing contacts between the baby’s head and the birth channel, the device could prevent infections acquired during delivery. The device has potential for wide application in resource poor settings even by mid-level providers. Noting this progress and the potential for the device.