Uterine motility depends on the formation of the contractile protein actomyosin under the influence of the Ca2+-dependent phosphorylating enzyme myosin light-chain kinase. Oxytocin promotes contractions by increasing the intracellular Ca2+, which in turn activates myosin's light chain kinase.. Oxytocin has specific receptors in the muscle lining of the uterus and the receptor concentration increases greatly during pregnancy, reaching a maximum in early labor at term.
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
Incidence not known
Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:
Symptoms of overdose
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some
patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare
Typical Dose For Inducing Labor
An infusion of Pitocin begins by delivering 0.5 milliunits (MU) per minute. The dose is increased by 1 to 2 MU per minute every 15 to 60 minutes until contractions are close to normal.
Typical Dose for Controlling Bleeding After Birth
An infusion delivers 10 MU at a rate of 20 to 40 MU per minute.
Typical Dose for an Inevitable Abortion
An infusion delivers 10 to 20 MU per minute, which is not to exceed 30 MU 12 hours.
Because oxytocin is given in a medical setting, an overdose is not likely to occur.
However, if you suspect an overdose, you should let your
doctor know right away.
Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your healthcare professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine.
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Other Medical Problems
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine. This medicine is given through a needle placed in one of your veins or as a shot into one of your muscles.
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
No information is available on the relationship of age to the effects of oxytocin in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established.
No information is available on the relationship of age to the effects of oxytocin in geriatric patients.
Animal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.
Studies suggest that this medication may alter milk
production or composition. If an alternative to this medication is not
prescribed, you should monitor the infant for side effects and adequate milk