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.
Media Articles Related to Pitocin (Oxytocin)
The dark side of the 'love hormone'; similarities with the effects of alcohol
Source: Alcohol / Addiction / Illegal Drugs News From Medical News Today [2015.05.20]
Researchers at the University of Birmingham have highlighted significant similarities between the behavioural effects of oxytocin and alcohol.
'Love hormone' has similar properties to alcohol
Source: Alcohol / Addiction / Illegal Drugs News From Medical News Today [2015.05.20]
It is labeled the 'love hormone,' but a new study claims there is a darker side to oxytocin - it influences our actions in a similar way to alcohol.
'Puppy dog eyes' explained by science
Source: Veterinary News From Medical News Today [2015.04.17]
A new study measured rises in levels of oxytocin - the 'love hormone' responsible for maternal bonding - in both dogs and owners when they gaze into each others eyes.
Published Studies Related to Pitocin (Oxytocin)
Safety and efficacy of misoprostol versus oxytocin for the prevention of
postpartum hemorrhage. 
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. 
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. 
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...
Standard- or high-dose oxytocin for nulliparous women with confirmed delay in
labour: quantitative and qualitative results from a pilot randomised controlled
delay in labour were recruited, and 18 were interviewed... CONCLUSIONS: A pilot trial assessing the efficacy of high-dose oxytocin was
Effects of single dose intranasal oxytocin on social cognition in schizophrenia. 
Deficits in social cognition are common in schizophrenia and predict poor
Clinical Trials Related to Pitocin (Oxytocin)
Oxytocin Administration in the Third Stage of Labour - A Study of Appropriate Route and Dose [Completed]
Mothers are given the medication oxytocin after birth to help the uterus (womb) contract and
therefore reduce blood loss. In Canada, oxytocin is given either into the muscle of the thigh
or into a vein. However, it is not known which route is better. This study will test which
dose and route of oxytocin is best in reducing blood loss following vaginal delivery.
The Association Between Fluid Administration, Oxytocin Administration, and Fetal Heart Rate Changes [Recruiting]
Fetal heart rate patterns are an important parameter in the diagnosis of non-reassuring
fetal status. Combined-spinal epidural analgesia is a method of initiating labor analgesia
used by approximately 90% of the parturients at Prentice Women's Hospital. Optimizing the
variables which could affect fetal heart rate patterns at the time of initiation of
analgesia, such as fluid administration and oxytocin management, could help us provide
better care for our patients and their fetuses.
Hypotheses: Patients who receive a 1000 mL fluid bolus and lower rates of oxytocin
administration will have fewer non-reassuring FHR changes.
Oxytocin Treatment of Schizophrenia [Recruiting]
Purpose: Test whether intranasal administration of the neuropeptide, oxytocin, improves
social cognition, social functioning and decreases paranoia and other psychotic symptoms in
Participants: 80 adults with schizophrenia for at least one year and with a high rating for
Procedures (methods): Oxytocin or placebo will be administered twice daily in an intranasal
spray (6 insufflations/dose or 24 IU) for 6 weeks. Before, during and at the end of the
trial, each subject will undergo psychiatric symptom ratings and tests of mental abilities
used in social functioning and social competence and subjects and an informant will complete
ratings of social functioning.
Induction of Labor With Oxytocin: When Should Oxytocin be Held? [Recruiting]
The investigators propose to perform a prospective randomized control trial to compare the
rate of cesarean delivery in women where Oxytocin (OT) is discontinued once active labor
begins (5 cm dilation) when compared with women where OT is continued at a maintenance level
per the usual protocol.
One study group will follow an oxytocin protocol which is incremental until 5 cm dilation
and then maintained at the same level throughout labor. The second arm will follow an
oxytocin protocol also incremental, but then discontinued once the cervix is 5 cm. The
primary outcome will be the rate of cesarean delivery between the groups. Secondary
outcomes to be evaluated will include duration of the labor, fetal heart rate abnormalities,
and frequency of uterine hyperstimulation, maternal and neonatal outcomes.
As mentioned in the study proposal, the proposed experimental arm is currently not performed
as part of the oxytocin guidelines at the investigators' institution. One study from Israel
suggests no difference in pregnancy outcomes with the proposed use of oxytocin. Although
some providers stop the oxytocin in active labor for their patients, this is not a commonly
performed procedure at the investigators' institution. The investigators are not aware of
other institutions employing the above practice.
Effect of Prophylactic Administration of Oxytocin in Unijectâ¢ on Postpartum Hemorrhage at Home Births in Ghana [Not yet recruiting]
This study is designed to test the hypothesis that the intramuscular administration of 10 IU
of oxytocin in Uniject™ during the third stage of labor by a Community Health Officer (CHO)
at home births in Ghana will reduce the risk of postpartum hemorrhage by 50 percent relative
to home births attended by the same type of provider who does not provide a uterotonic drug.
Reports of Suspected Pitocin (Oxytocin) Side Effects
Drug Ineffective (2),
Postpartum Haemorrhage (2),
Unresponsive TO Stimuli (1),
Foetal Growth Restriction (1),
Feeling Hot (1),
Foetal Heart Rate Decreased (1),
Blood Magnesium Increased (1),
Procedural Pain (1),
Product Quality Issue (1), more >>