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Ever hear of Pitocin NOT working?

41369 Views 15 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  PancakeGoddess
With my last birth I was induced. I was started on pitocin at 8:00am and only had very small painless inconsistant contractions. They upped and upped the pitocin and nothing happened. This went on until 3:00 that afternoon. My nurse told me she had never had to put the pit up that high before. I can't remember the actual number but I do know it was in the 20's I'm thinking 28 although I have no idea what this means since I am not in the medical field. At 3:00 the doctor came in and said that if I wanted I could go home and I could come back the next day to try again or break my water. I was not coming back so I told them to break my water This was at 3:30. At this time I was still only 3cm dilated and I came in at only 1cm. Welllllllllll everything happened pretty fast after that. Contractions right on top of the other. DD was born 3 hrs later at 6:30 pm. I also want to add although it was an induced labor I did not have any pain meds which I am very proud of

Back to my question
Has anyone ever heard of Pitocin NOT working? I was really surprised when it did almost nothing for me especially at such a high dose. But it seemed after my water broke everything REALLY kicked in since it was almost immediately so intense. Could it be becasue this was my 5th child not including a twins that I was a gestaitional carrier for? Or could it have been that my body was just not ready?

We are getting ready to TTC our 6th and last child and all I keep thinking about is my last birth and all the things I'd like to do differently.

Thanks for reading!
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With my dd I was on pit for 15 hours w/ painful contractions after 10 hours with cytotec. The contractions I had were extremely painful but I never got past 2 cm even with my water broken.
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Your story sounds so much like mine... I was leaking amniotic fluid but not really having contractions so they started pitocin, had it way up, nothing... then the doc broke my water the rest of the way and it was just hellish, even though they turned off the pit right away, but yeah, contractions one right after the other, no breaks whatsoever... which is the reason why I have very warm feelings towards my epidural. Anyway this was my first child, so, I don't think that has anything to do with it.

I was induced with Pitocin for 2 DAYS! (I was supposedly 2.5 weeks overdue but I know that they were going by false dates. My cycles were very long when I conceived.) The IV Pitocin totally messed up my thrombocyte levels and they were dangerously low at one point, so they were almost going to talk me into an "emergency" c-section (as if that's not a bigger wound that would bleed more than a vaginal birth!

On the 3rd day they gave me 2x Prostaglandin tablets. It took 2 doses and 10 hours for them to work.

So, all in all I was induced for almost 72 hours, and then went through a 10 hour labour. No drugs apart from the induction.

There was one smart doc at the hospital who took time to really think and he said that since my cervix was completely "unripe" at the time they induced, the Pitocin was a very bad idea. Apparently it can only work when you are ready to dilate and your cervix is soft already. It's just a shame he wasn't on duty when they started the induction with Pitocin!

Needless to say, I'm not having another hospital birth unless my life depends on it.
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Yes. My mother was induced every day for five days until she finally gave birth.
OP, it sounds to me that the pitocin worked just fine, and how you'd expect it to work for someone being induced from scratch. The factors which trigger spontaneous labor are really not well known. We know that the cervix usually gradually ripens and softens over time - from hours to weeks before true labor starts. When you start labor from scratch on an unripe cervix, it can take hours or even days to do that same ripening with just pitocin. When you are induced, the other factors that we don't understand that would have triggered spontaneous labor are not present, and pitocin alone which simply causes contractions can not always make up for it by itself. Once the cervix is all the way effaced (thinned out) and 3-5 cms dilated, and you are in active labor, pitocin works more predictably.
So it sounds like you had a nice response to pitocin, with the cervix being ripe in just about about 7 hours, and you were probably heading into active labor on your own anyway when the doc broke your water - although that may have jump started it.
For a pitocin induction to take just 10 ish hours starting from 1 cm is actually pretty good! So I would say the pitocin worked just as can be expected.
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The pitocin didn't work for me, and the stress levels of being hooked up to a million wires and tubes actually stopped my (rather productive) labor completely.
When I was induced (
) the OB warned me that they sometimes have to repeat the procedure for three days before the labor begins. Fortunately that didn't happen in my case, but I guess it does happen.
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Thanks for all the responses. I guess it's not that uncommon. I have been induced w/ pitocin before and always responded immediately. This last time though I never really had a "real" contraction if that makes any sense. They were more like a braxton hicks.I also got my info wrong when I posted before. I looked up my birth story from that birth and I went to the hospital 2cm as I had been for a few weeks and when my Dr. broke my water she could stretch me to 3cm.
Thanks again,
Yup. If your body isn't ready to have the baby, it'll resist really hard. Sometimes it'll give up and give in, particularly if you're really exhausted... other times it is very stubborn.
Yes~ my best friend and I were discussing her induction. She had cytotec and pit, neither of them made her budge... Her doc said she was "maxed out" on the dosage of pit, and stopped it. She went into labor 2 days later...
I spent 3 days on Pit w/ cervadil at the max dose and it never even got me to 1cm but that could have been because of all the mag they were giving me and well, i'm just dam stubborn and so's my body..
It happens...

I spent a week in the hospital with Pit getting induced for Pre-eclampsia... full 24 hours on, 8 hours off to rest... Lather, rinse, repeat... for seven days!
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Yeah, I've heard ofit. Which is another reason I like to remind people that they should request an overnight Cervadil induction if they really have/want to go the induction route and hold off on Pit. as long as possible because it can NOT work. The good news is that if it doesn't work, any caregiver worrth their salt will send you home because it can really irritate your uterus. Pit not working is often referred to as a "failed induction, cause for c/s" unfortunately

Namaste, Tara
My midwife says that pitocin only works if your body & the baby are both ready for the birth. If the babe still needs to cook longer it won't work!
Same thing for me - pitocin did very little until water was broken. My body wasn't ready to go into labor, I think.
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