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Pitocin (Oxytocin) - Summary




Elective induction of labor is defined as the initiation of labor in a pregnant individual who has no medical indications for induction. Since the available data are inadequate to evaluate the benefits-to-risks considerations, Pitocin is not indicated for elective induction of labor.



Pitocin (oxytocin injection, USP) is a sterile, clear, colorless aqueous solution of synthetic oxytocin, for intravenous infusion or intramuscular injection. Pitocin is a nonapeptide found in pituitary extracts from mammals. It is standardized to contain 10 units of oxytocic hormone/mL and contains 0.5% Chlorobutanol, a chloroform derivative as a preservative, with the pH adjusted with acetic acid. Pitocin may contain up to 16% of total impurities. The hormone is prepared synthetically to avoid possible contamination with vasopressin (ADH) and other small polypeptides with biologic activity.


Elective induction of labor is defined as the initiation of labor in a pregnant individual who has no medical indications for induction. Since the available data are inadequate to evaluate the benefits-to-risks considerations, Pitocin is not indicated for elective induction of labor.

Antepartum: Pitocin is indicated for the initiation or improvement of uterine contractions, where this is desirable and considered suitable for reasons of fetal or maternal concern, in order to achieve vaginal delivery. It is indicated for (1) induction of labor in patients with a medical indication for the initiation of labor, such as Rh problems, maternal diabetes, preeclampsia at or near term, when delivery is in the best interests of mother and fetus or when membranes are prematurely ruptured and delivery is indicated; (2) stimulation or reinforcement of labor, as in selected cases of uterine inertia; (3) as adjunctive therapy in the management of incomplete or inevitable abortion. In the first trimester, curettage is generally considered primary therapy. In second trimester abortion, oxytocin infusion will often be successful in emptying the uterus. Other means of therapy, however, may be required in such cases.

Postpartum: Pitocin is indicated to produce uterine contractions during the third stage of labor and to control postpartum bleeding or hemorrhage.

See all Pitocin indications & dosage >>


Published Studies Related to Pitocin (Oxytocin)

Intranasal oxytocin administration prior to exposure therapy for arachnophobia impedes treatment response. [2015]
exposure therapy in patients with specific phobia... CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that OT administration effects on extinction

Safety and efficacy of misoprostol versus oxytocin for the prevention of postpartum hemorrhage. [2014]
Postpartum hemorrhage (PPH) is the commonest cause of maternal death worldwide. Studies suggest that the use of misoprostol may be beneficial in clinical settings where oxytocin is unavailable... Results from this study indicate that it may be considered as an alternative for oxytocin in low resource clinical settings.

Sex differences in the neural and behavioral response to intranasal oxytocin and vasopressin during human social interaction. [2014]
Both oxytocin (OT) and vasopressin (AVP) are known to modulate social behavior, and dysfunction in both systems has been postulated as a potential cause of certain psychiatric disorders that involve social behavioral deficits. In particular, there is growing interest in intranasal OT as a potential treatment for certain psychiatric disorders, and preliminary pre-clinical and clinical studies suggest efficacy in alleviating some of the associated symptoms...

Oxytocin promotes facial emotion recognition and amygdala reactivity in adults with asperger syndrome. [2014]
The neuropeptide oxytocin has recently been shown to enhance eye gaze and emotion recognition in healthy men. Here, we report a randomized double-blind, placebo-controlled trial that examined the neural and behavioral effects of a single dose of intranasal oxytocin on emotion recognition in individuals with Asperger syndrome (AS), a clinical condition characterized by impaired eye gaze and facial emotion recognition...

Oxytocin improves behavioural and neural deficits in inferring others' social emotions in autism. [2014]
Recent studies have suggested oxytocin's therapeutic effects on deficits in social communication and interaction in autism spectrum disorder through improvement of emotion recognition with direct emotional cues, such as facial expression and voice prosody... The present findings suggest that oxytocin enhances the ability to understand others' social emotions that have also required second-order false belief rather than first-order false beliefs under conditions without direct emotional cues in autism spectrum disorder at both the behaviour and neural levels.

more studies >>

Clinical Trials Related to Pitocin (Oxytocin)

Foley Bulb With Low Dose Pitocin Versus Foley Bulb With a Standard Incremental Infusion Protocol for the Induction of Labor [Completed]
The purpose of this research study is to compare induction of labor using a foley catheter bulb with a low dose of oxytocin versus a foley catheter bulb with an increasing dose of oxytocin. A foley catheter bulb with or without oxytocin is a common method of labor induction in patients whose cervix is not significantly dilated or thinned out (effaced). Oxytocin (pitocin) is a medicine used to increase the number and strength of the womb's contractions.

The Effect of Oxytocin on the Gastric Emptying [Completed]
The investigators are going to examine whether oxytocin has a prokinetic effect on gastric emptying in patients suffering from gastro paresis. Oxytocin infusion will be compared with sodium chloride infusion.

Oxytocin Modulation of Startle Reactivity to Social Stimuli and Moral Decision Making [Completed]
The purpose of this study is to determine whether oxytocin affects the modulation of startle reactivity by aversive social stimuli and to investigate the oxytocin effect on moral judgements. Furthermore the investigators explore the effects of oxytocin receptor (OXTR) polymorphisms on behavioral responses to social stimuli.

Deciphering the Role of Oxytocin in Motivation: an fMRI Study [Active, not recruiting]
The proposed study will investigate the effects of intranasal oxytocin administration on neural activity associated with social and non-social motivation.

Uterotonic Efficacy of Oxytocin 2.5 Versus 10 Units During Caesarean Section at Mulago Hospital [Completed]
The purpose of the study was to determine whether 2. 5 international units of oxytocin gives adequate uterine tone and is safe as compared to 10 international units of oxytocin following caesarean section delivery at Mulago hospital.

more trials >>

Reports of Suspected Pitocin (Oxytocin) Side Effects

Drug Ineffective (2)Postpartum Haemorrhage (2)Unresponsive TO Stimuli (1)Foetal Growth Restriction (1)Hyperventilation (1)Feeling Hot (1)Foetal Heart Rate Decreased (1)Blood Magnesium Increased (1)Procedural Pain (1)Product Quality Issue (1)more >>

Page last updated: 2015-08-10

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