Epidural and pitocin: side effects

An epidural is an anesthetic technique using a small tube placed in the lower back to deliver local anesthetic or other pain medicines near the nerves that cause pain in labor. You will not get sleepy from this type of anesthesia.
Epidural pain relief is popular choice for women in the labor especially for first-time moms. For women giving birth by c-section, epidurals are certainly a great alternative to general anesthetic, allowing women to see their baby being born, and to hold and breastfeed at an early stage.
Some side effects of epidural:
-Your legs might tingle or feel numb and heavy.
-Your blood pressure might fall slightly
-Some back tenderness might occur at the site of the insertion, and it might last for a few days/weeks.
-Itching, difficulty urination.
-Some minor neurologic problems
-Permanent neurologic problems, such as paralysis, can occur with ANY type of anesthetic procedure, but they are exceedingly rare

Pitocin (oxytocin injection, USP) is used to induce labor, strengthen labor contractions during childbirth, control bleeding after childbirth. It is also sometimes used to help milk secretion in breast-feeding. In general, oxytocin should not be used to start labor unless there are specific medical reasons. In women who are unusually sensitive to its effects, these contractions may become too strong. In rare cases, this may lead to tearing of the uterus.
Side effects:
-convulsions (seizures)
-difficulty in breathing
-fast or irregular heartbeat
-headache (continuing or severe)
-pelvic or abdominal pain (severe)
-skin rash or itching
-severe bleeding
Oxytocin may cause jaundice and eye problems such as retinal hemorrhage in some newborn infants. If you have concerns about this, ask your doctor.

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Current: Anoka, Minnesota
Birth: November 22
On Moms.com since: Jun 21, 2013
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