Oxytocin is used for inducing labour in full-term pregnant women. It can also b
e used to prevent & control bleeding after childbirth. Oxytocin is available in the form of injection.
Uses of Oxytocin
- Oxytocin is used in pregnant women to induce labour.
- It can also be used to control bleeding post-delivery.
Contraindications of Oxytocin
When should one not use Oxytocin
- If you are allergic to oxytocin
- If you have problems with your heart or blood circulation
- If you are suffering from a condition called preeclamptic toxaemia (symptoms may include high blood pressure, protein in the urine and swelling)
- If there is an obstruction to normal delivery or normal delivery is not possible
- If you have strong uterine contractions
- If you have been given vaginal prostaglandins
Side effects of Oxytocin
Common side effects of this drug are:
- Stomach pain
- Uneven heartbeats
Precautions and Warnings of Oxytocin
Can I take oxytocin during pregnancy?
Oxytocin is not given till the estimated date of delivery.
Can I take oxytocin while breastfeeding?
Oxytocin can pass into breast milk in small amounts but adverse effects in breastfed babies do not occur as the baby’s digestive system make it ineffective.
Can I drive if I have taken oxytocin?
As oxytocin causes uterine contractions, women should avoid driving.
Can I consume alcohol after taking oxytocin?
It is not advisable to consume alcohol with oxytocin. It may cause unwanted effects.
Other General Warnings
Talk to your doctor if
- You have a history of caesarean section
- You have chest pain
- You have pre-existing heart disease, blood circulation problems, high blood pressure or kidney disease
- Your age is more than 35 years
- If normal delivery is difficult
- You had complications during your pregnancy
- Duration of your pregnancy is more than 40 weeks
Mode of Action of Oxytocin
How Does It Work?
Oxytocin works by stimulating the uterine walls of the women, causing uterine contractions by changing the calcium concentrations in the uterine muscle cells. This induces labour and the child is delivered....
Interactions of Oxytocin
Interactions with other medicines
Some medicines can affect the way oxytocin works or this medicine itself can reduce the effectiveness of other medicines taken at the same time. Tell your doctor about all the medicines, supplements or herbals you are currently taking or might take to avoid any possible interaction. Prostaglandins, medicines used in epidural anaesthesia, cough and cold medicines containing decongestants, medicines containing caffeine or other stimulant medicines and other hormones used for various medical conditions....
Interactions with food items
It is given only at the time of labour in a hospital setup. Hence, interaction with food is minimal. The doctor should be consulted for any food interactions. Fluid intake should be minimum as retention of fluid in the body may occur....
Dr. Arpit Verma
MBBS, MD (Pharmacology)
Dr. Ritu Budania
MBBS, MD (Pharmacology)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: How does Oxytocin work?
A: Oxytocin works by stimulating the uterine walls of the women, causing uterine contractions by changing the calcium concentrations in the uterine muscle cells. This induces labour and the child is delivered.
Q: In which all dosage forms is Oxytocin available?
A: Oxytocin is available in the form of injection.
- Oxytocin 10 IU/ml Concentrate for Solution for Infusion - Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC) - (emc) [Internet]. Medicines.org.uk. 2021 [cited 7 February 2022]
- Oxytocin 10 IU/ml Concentrate for Solution for Infusion - Patient Information Leaflet (PIL) - (emc) [Internet]. Medicines.org.uk. 2021 [cited 7 February 2022]
- Oxytocin [Internet]. Dailymed.nlm.nih.gov. 2021 [cited 7 February 2022]
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