African Health Sciences

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A prospective study to compare the effectiveness of adjunctive rectal misoprostol or oxytocin titration in the prevention of primary post-partum haemorrhage in at risk patients

Rafat Muhammad, Aliyu Isah, Teddy Agida, Godwin Akaba


Background: Adjunctive uterotonic in patients at risk of primary post-partum haemorrhage may reduce its incidence. 

Objective: To compare the effectiveness and safety of adjunctive rectal misoprostol with adjunctive intravenous oxy- tocin for the prevention of primary post-partum haemorrhage in at risk patients.

Materials and methods: A total of 122 patients with risk factors for uterine atony were allocated to receive either 600μg of rectal misoprostol (n= 61) or 20IU of oxytocin infusion (n=61) after routine management of third stage of labour.  Post-partum blood loss was measured using differential delivery towel and pad weighing.

Results: There was similarity in the estimated post-partum blood loss, with no significant difference in the mean post-partum hematocrit levels between the adjunctive rectal misoprostol group and oxytocin infusion group (P=0.712). There was no difference in the need for additional intervention of uterotonics between the two groups. There were however, higher incidences of shivering and pyrexia among those that received misoprostol compared with the oxy- tocin group.

Conclusion: Rectal misoprostol is as effective and safe as oxytocin when used as an adjunctive uterotonic in prevent- ing primary post-partum haemorrhage in patients with risk factors for uterine atony after active management of third stage of labour.

Keywords: Adjunctive rectal misoprostol, primary post-partum haemorrhage, patients.
AJOL African Journals Online