Opinions on pitocin after delivery - Mothering Forums

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Old 04-13-2011, 02:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm writing up my birth plan and I have on there that I don't want pitocin after delivery to help contract the uterus but I realized I'm actually uneducated on the pros vs cons of using it. What do you ladies think?

I'm off to do a bit of research myself and then maybe make an educated choice.

 

 

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Old 04-13-2011, 02:56 PM
 
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I don't think you should get pitocin unless medically indicated (hemorrhage.) 

Pitocin is horse oxytocin and I believe it contains other not so wonderful things, so it's better left as a last resort. I'd look it up but I'm being super lazy - forgive me. :)

 

If you nurse the baby (assuming you're nursing) right after the birth - that'll release your natural oxytocin. So, I'd request they let you nurse your baby right away if possible.


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Old 04-13-2011, 04:52 PM
 
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I am thinking on this one as well, we discussed it at my midwife appointment on Monday.  She is fine with wait and see how things go naturally, but at the same time she pointed out that there is a pretty good body of research showing that a shot of oxytocin does reduce risk of hemorrhage.  I had it for both previous babies and I would say probably I'll have it again...it's never caused me any issues, not that I know of, anyway.

 

FWIW, here is the Cochrane review

http://www2.cochrane.org/reviews/en/ab001808.html

 

Edited to add:  I am having a home birth, about 25 minutes from hospital.  That may influence how I feel about it - to me, there is a proven benefit and I have never experienced any adverse effects from the prophylactic oxytocin.  If I were giving birth right in the hospital I might feel differently about wait and see.

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Old 04-13-2011, 05:57 PM
 
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Our Midwife only uses it if necessary (excessive bleeding or evidence of hemorrhage ) and uses abdominal massage to help uterine contractions along with breastfeeding. The massage is something we'll have to keep up for a few days (I forget the exact info) after we come home.


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Old 04-13-2011, 06:16 PM
 
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I hemorrhaged almost to the point of transfusion last time, so I'm sure I'll have it.   If not for that history, and the embarrassing side effects of the drug they gave me then, I would just wait and see.


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Old 04-14-2011, 08:30 AM
 
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I don't think it needs to be standard procedure but it is nice to have it if needed!


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Old 04-14-2011, 10:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, ladies.

After reading about it I think I'm leaning toward a wait and see. the only thing my OBGYN said was that if I didn't have the shot I had to have the massage. She said that the word really shouldn't be massage since it tends to really hurt while they are doing it. I don't know. this is one of the few things I'm really not feeling strongly about either way. I met with my doula last night and I forgot to ask her opinion.

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Old 04-14-2011, 10:18 AM
 
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If I remember, they did the massage thing with me even though I had pitocin with my first. So, I don't know. It isn't terribly comfortable and I don't really think it is necessary unless you bleed excessively but for some reason they always think they have to be doing something to you. I would think you should be able to decline the "massage" if you wanted to too. I can't imagine they can make you do anything you really don't want to, especially with your support person(s) close by. 


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Old 04-14-2011, 12:13 PM
 
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The other posters are right on that breast stimulation and massage of the uterus can help it contract. Also, placing a part of your placenta under your tongue or just eating it will help the uterus contract naturally.

 

In the even of an emergency, though, pitocin might be the best way to go - just maybe not the first thing you try if it's not urgent.


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Old 04-14-2011, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Partaria View Post
 placing a part of your placenta under your tongue or just eating it will help the uterus contract naturally.
 

Ok, I know this isn't going to be popular but the idea of eating placenta totally makes me want to yack. If that's your preferred route, awesome for you but I will not be eating or swallowing any placenta.

I would donate it for stem cells if I could but that's not really an option.
 

 

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Old 04-14-2011, 01:52 PM
 
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With DS they administered pitocin after he was born.  After talking with my midwives it seems like it has become standard in all hospitals.  This time around my midwife will utilize breastfeeding and massage if needed - and only administer pitocin as a last resort.  I remember the nurse massaging my uterus with DS (along with the pitocin) and I don't remember it being painful - especially when comparing it to the hours of labor that had preceded it.  winky.gif

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Old 04-14-2011, 02:10 PM
 
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I have no problemo with prophylactic pitocin.  The studies dont show any even inkling of a problem with it.  The placenta thing under the tongue has never worked when Ive seen it tried.. probably a couple of handfuls of time.  Herbs can be really effective though and that would be my first choice if possible.

 

This usually isnt as much of an issue with first time mamas.  If your CBCs have been good and you dont have a history of bleeding issues.. OH and you have stopped any blood thinning stuff like fish oils.

 

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Old 04-14-2011, 02:43 PM
 
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I'm another who is glad it's available if needed but will make that decision based on whatever happens after labor. 


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Old 04-14-2011, 10:08 PM
 
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My doula asked me about it tonight and I wasn't really sure what to say either.  I don't know if I had it with either of my boys.  I told her that if I were hemorrhaging of course, they can do whatever the eff they want to stop the bleeding, but I don't just want it for the hell of it.  Something to discuss with my midwife on Monday!


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Old 04-18-2011, 06:36 PM
 
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In my experience, they used cytotec, but it was only because my midwife couldnt stop the bleeding..l guess that means I was hemorraging? She was so close to calling the ambulance, but did the cytotec and that worked. So yes, I don't think I would want any drug unless it was necessary, and in my case it was. 43 hours of labor meant that I had one TIRED uterus, lol.


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Old 04-18-2011, 10:38 PM
 
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I was given Pitocin after the birth of my first baby girl, I breastfed after she was delivered. However later on my milk supply never came in due to undiagnosed thyroid condition. So I am not sure if my Oxytocin didn't naturally kick in or what happened? However I wouldn't stop bleeding and was hemorrhaging so I was given it to stop the bleeding. I didn't have any adverse side affects from it. What you could say in your birth plan is "No Pitocin unless medically necessary". Because I think it is standard to give it to all ladies in many hospitals as a precaution now. That way only if you don't stop bleeding will the give it to you.


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Old 04-18-2011, 11:03 PM
 
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They gave it to me after both births, combined with the uterine massage, and both the resident with my dd and the CNM with my ds said I "borderline hemorrhaged" which I guess is to say "officially" but I didn't have any ill effects of it. They say I bleed a lot due to relatively fast labors and being a redhead. Far out. I don't know that I had any negative effects from the drug, but I do plan to talk with my mw about starting with herbs first if the bleeding doesn't stop with the usual routine. (Need to make a note of this now before I forget, actually!) I'm curious to see how my delivering my placenta in my own time instead of with someone down there managing it will affect my being a "bleeder". I would consider a bit of placenta, but I can't blame you for not being into the idea either, SallyNichole! They did give me the option of massaging my own uterus but were insistent that I was fairly, Idk.. intense with the "massage". I didn't nurse dd soon enough, but was nursing ds right away, and that didn't change anything. It was also hard to tell if the bleeding would've stopped on it's own at that time without pitocin as well, and they were just getting anxious about it?

 

I like the PP's idea of having it as "only if medically necessary". The massage can be very unpleasant, but I would still go with that over a pointless drug if I could. I think like a lot of things, bleeding can be very individual, and hospitals and docs just have to apply a particular standard to it for a guideline, and then their own experience plays a part too. Not that that's a bad thing at all, just that we all bleed differently of course, depending on so many things.


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Old 04-19-2011, 07:48 AM
 
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I didn't have it with Dylan and I did with Ava. I didn't need it with her, though, and it really hurt but only for about 2-3 contractions. Since I am having a hospital birth this time I am going to err on the side of not having it unless needed.


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Old 04-19-2011, 11:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, ladies. I am having a hospital birth and I have decided that I'm going to specify that I only consent to pitocin if there is a problem with hemorrhage.

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Old 04-19-2011, 01:00 PM
 
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I wouldn't want it if I didn't need it.  I think it makes the afterbirth pains much worse. 

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Old 04-20-2011, 04:59 PM
 
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I would never take it if it was not medically necessary, i.e. hemorrhage, I had the massage last time and had DS at the breast.

 

One suggestion that I think really helped- eat placenta fresh!  I had little bleeding and contracted right up without too much pain (the massage however was not fun).


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Old 04-20-2011, 05:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I just can not eat placenta. I know that it helps with so many things but I just have a mental block and it's just well outside of my comfort zone. Bu I still appreciate the advise.

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