How effective is oxytocin for the treatment of slow progress in the first stage of spontaneous labour in low-risk women?
Early use of oxytocin resulted in an increase in uterine hyperstimulation associated with foetal heart changes. Sample size was too small to determine if its use had an effect on foetal mortality.
Slow progress in the first stage of spontaneous labour is associated with an increased caesarean section rate and foetal and maternal morbidity. Oxytocin has long been advocated as a treatment for slow progress in labour but it is unclear to what extent it improves the outcomes for that labour and whether it actually reduces the caesarean section rate or maternal and foetal morbidity. Low risk referred to women with singleton pregnancies at term.