PMID: 41763Sep 1, 1979

Loss of beat-to-beat variability and a negative oxytocin challenge test: an ominous prognostic sign

International Journal of Gynaecology and Obstetrics : the Official Organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics
R Homburg, V Insler


The reputation of the predictive accuracy of a negative oxytocin challenge test (OCT) has been somewhat tarnished by recent sporadic reports of intrauterine fetal death relatively soon after a negative OCT. We have analyzed probable causes and the possibilities of reducing to a minimum "false-negative" results of the OCT. In particular, several of these reports did not take into account the loss of baseline fetal heart rate (FHR) variability recorded during the OCT and, in the absence of late decelerations, the OCT was interpreted as negative. We suggest that recordings showing a loss of baseline beat-to-beat FHR variability and a negative OCT illustrate a complete inability of the fetus to react to any stimulus and that, in these cases, a negative OCT should in no way be reassuring, but rather a warning sign of severe fetal compromise. Two cases are presented to illustrate this phenomenon.


Jan 15, 1977·American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology·J T Parer, J F Afonso
Jan 1, 1977·British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology·T F Baskett, E Sandy
Apr 15, 1977·American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology·R G Marcum
May 1, 1977·British Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology·G H Visser, H J Huisjes
Sep 1, 1975·American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology·T F Baskett, E Sandy
Nov 1, 1975·American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology·A B WeingoldJ O'Keiffe
May 15, 1976·American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology·J C Seski, A A Compton
Sep 1, 1972·American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology·M RayR Hesselgesser

Related Concepts

Entire Fetus
Placenta Disorders
Fetal Oxytocin Stress Test
Fetal Heart
False Negative Reactions
Placental Function Tests
Placental Insufficiency
Fetal Tissue
Fetal Death

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