Why is there a shortage of Pitocin in 2023: Why is Oxytocin short supply

Why is there a shortage of Pitocin in 2023: Why is Oxytocin short supply

Why is there a shortage of Pitocin? Hospitals and obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) doctors are looking into ways to improve the use of the medically necessary drug Pitocin. It is happening due to the recent Pitocin shortage. Pitocin usage during labor and delivery has become a common practice. Pregnant women are unsure of their alternatives if they require medicinal help to start labor or stop excessive bleeding while Pitocin is in limited supply.

Pitocin is frequently used to induce labor and stop severe postpartum bleeding. This is because it raises intracellular calcium ions. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) says that the availability and impact of calcium ions are essential for uterine movement and contraction. Pitocin is a popular option for many doctors. It is used for patients who need to deliver immediately or have heavy postpartum bleeding.

Using Pitocin to stop bleeding after birth has also become standard practice. Pitocin is not advised for voluntary inductions, defined as the start of labor without a doctor’s advice. Even though Pitocin is only recommended for non-elective installations, several symptoms make it necessary to use it. 

DiscontinuedNews is impartial and independent, and every day, we create distinctive, world-class programs, news, and content that inform, educate and entertain millions of people worldwide.

Pitocin shortage 2023

Why is there a shortage of Pitocin in 2023: Why is Oxytocin short supply

Synthetic oxytocin, also known as Pitocin, is a medicine derived from the peptide oxytocin. Pitocin is carried out and used in community midwifery practices throughout the third and fourth stages of labor. It is done even though licensed midwives and others monitoring births in community settings do not initiate or supplement work with this medicine. Each midwifery practice may need to modify its inventory and practice standards. It is to be done to get the most out of Pitocin until the issue with the drug shortage has been resolved.

This drug is currently unavailable, and the FDA has made the public aware of this fact. In the United States, synthetic oxytocin for injection is produced by two big companies and several small pharmacies. 

One of the leading suppliers announced a delay in the production of oxytocin for injection on September 23, 2022. The majority of California’s licensed midwives are now aware of this shortfall. According to the FDA drug shortage website, there is a shortage from one manufacturer and a low supply from another manufacturer. It is still being determined when production and inventory levels will recover.

Who manufactures Pitocin?

Pitocin is a synthetic version of oxytocin, a hormone that causes and enhances uterine contractions. During labor and delivery in a healthy pregnancy, oxytocin production should rise gradually, resulting in the baby’s delivery. But sometimes, medical professionals might choose to induce childbirth. 

Pitocin can initiate, strengthen, and increase the frequency of contractions. Pitocin may also be used to start labor in other circumstances. This includes when a pregnant woman’s contractions are too light, or there are other issues. Par Pharmaceutical manufactured Pitocin.

Is Pitocin recalled?

Drug shortages can happen for a variety of reasons. This includes delays, discontinuations, and issues with production and quality. The FDA gets its information on medicine shortages or supply issues only from its manufacturers. Later, the two organizations will collaborate closely to prevent or lessen the effects of shortages.

On September 23, 2022, the Pitocin shortages started. One of the top two Pitocin suppliers, Fresenius Kabi, experienced manufacturing difficulties before this shortage. Two major manufacturers and a few small compounding pharmacies supply this synthetic hormone. Thus, the production issues at one of the manufacturers undoubtedly impact the others.

The restocking of Pitocin should get back to normal by mid-December 2022, according to the ASHP Foundation, a group that advocates for patient care pharmacists. This foundation said that women expecting their deliveries before the New Year shouldn’t be worried. But they should be aware that policies and processes can change.

Pregnant women with concerns should consult their OB/GYN doctor to learn how the shortage has impacted their neighborhood hospital and create a delivery plan. Patients and doctors must communicate clearly. By lowering patient risk and improving the pregnant mother’s delivery experience, this interaction helps both the patient and the practitioner.

Is Pitocin out of stock?

Oxytocin, also known by the brand name Pitocin, is in short supply nationwide. The drug is essential for expecting mothers as it can aid in miscarriage recovery, regulate bleeding, and help induce labor.

According to officials, unlike other drugs, oxytocin has no medicinal substitute. Thus, it has made this shortage unusual. This shortage is pushing hospitals to cut back on prescription Pitocin except when it’s required.

According to Michael Ganio of the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, “we’re in that period where companies are trying to determine how much stock they have on hand.” He also questioned whether it would survive until a new supply was ready. Although there is hope that the shortage will soon be solved, the timing still needs to be determined.


Although this medication is considered necessary, does that mean everyone needs it? Many institutions have already implemented plans of action to reduce the risk to expecting mothers. Some institutions have established guidelines for giving the medication and have created a structure to assist health workers in deciding if Pitocin is necessary.

Other induction approaches are available for pregnant women if Pitocin is in limited supply at their hospital. Artificial rupture of membranes (AROM), also known as “breaking the water,” was and still is used to reduce delivery time and bleeding issues.

Cervical ripening methods, like using a tiny balloon and Misoprostol, have been proven successful in stretching the cervix and speeding up childbirth. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) believes that preparation is essential.