Oxytocin and customization of assistance in labor

Antonio Ragusa, Alessandro Svelato

Abstract


Synthetic oxytocin (synOT) is a commonly used drug in labor and it can be applied in all stages of labor. SynOT has been increasingly used over the years, and is currently one of the most common drugs employed in obstetrics. The goal of synOT administration is to cause the augmentation of labor; unfortunately, guidelines for the administration of this drug are often non-specific, although synOT is the drug most commonly associated with preventable adverse perinatal outcomes. Approximately half of all paid obstetric litigation claims in the United States involve allegations of injudicious use of oxytocin, and the association between oxytocin use, hyperstimulation, fetal distress and adverse neonatal outcome are well know. Furthermore, synOT and oxytocin have some extragenital effects that should be known by obstetricians. This review will present the viewpoint of the authors on this topic.


Keywords


synthetic oxytocin; labor; litigation; side effects; newborn; augmentation; dystocia

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