Pitocin

1 What is Pitocin?

Brand: Pitocin

Generic: Oxytocin

Pitocin is a hormone used for the induction of labor and to control bleeding after delivery. This drug is also used to induce secretion of milk in breastfeeding.

This drug should not be used to initiate labor unless there are specific medical reasons. Be sure you have discussed this with your doctor before receiving this medicine. This drug requires a prescription.

2 What to Know Before Using

Before using Pitocin, you must know all about the risks and complications associated with it. Inform your healthcare provider for any allergic reactions to these drugs or any other drugs, foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. Carefully read the label of non-prescription drugs for any possible allergic reaction or contraindications.

Data regarding the correlation of age to the effects of oxytocin in children are still unavailable while the safety and efficacy have not been established. Data regarding the correlation of age to the effects of oxytocin in geriatric patients are still unavailable. Adverse effects have been reported in animal studies but studies in pregnant women or animals are still inadequate.

Infant risk is still undetermined when using this drug during breastfeeding. Discuss with your healthcare professional about the potential risks and benefits of taking this drug while breastfeeding.

Drugs should not be taken together to prevent any interactions but in necessary cases inquire your healthcare provider regarding the adjustments in dosage or any other necessary precautions to prevent any unwanted side effects.

Inform your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription drugs. Intake of specific food or using alcohol or tobacco with this drug is associated with an increased risk of certain side effects.

Your healthcare professional can give you special instructions about the use of food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Inform your healthcare provider for any other medical problems such as:

  • Bleeding problems
  • Hypertension
  • Cephalopelvic disproportion
  • Cervical cancer
  • Fetal distress
  • Grand multiparity
  • Major surgery on the cervix or uterus
  • Overdistended uterus
  • Premature fetus
  • Problems with uterine contraction
  • Toxemia
  • Unfavorable fetal position
  • Other conditions that may require caesarean delivery
  • or Kidney disease
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3 Proper Usage

Proper usage of Pitocin requires strict adherence to your doctor’s orders. A trained healthcare professional will be the only one to give you this drug. This drug is injected into one your veins or as a shot into one of your muscles.

4 Precautions to Take

In using Pitocin, you must be careful and take some precautions as advised by your doctor. This drug can be used to induce labor but it carries certain risks such as contractions of the uterus.

These contractions may be greater in intensity in women who are unusually sensitive to this drug. Tearing of the uterus may happen in rare cases.

The fetal blood and oxygen supply may be decreased if the contractions are too strong. This drug may cause jaundice and eye problems such as retinal hemorrhage in some newborn infants.

Inform your healthcare professional immediately if you start having symptoms of water intoxication such as:

  • Confusion
  • Drowsiness
  • Headache
  • or Seizures while you are receiving this drug

Consult with your healthcare professional for any concerns.

5 Potential Side Effects

As with many medications, there are several potential side effects associated with Pitocin. Side effects may vary for each individual and prompt medical attention should be given if they occur.

Seek advice from your healthcare professional immediately if you experience any unusual symptoms such as:

Symptoms of overdose occur such as:

  • Restlessness
  • Shakiness
  • Sleepiness
  • Slow to respond
  • Slurred speech, or unconsciousness

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine, the side effects will slowly disappear. Ask your healthcare professional about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.

If any of the following side effects persists or are inconvenient, or if you notice any other effects, or if you have any questions about them, consult with your health care professional. Report any side effects to the FDA hotline at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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