Oral misoprostol versus intracervical dinoprostone for induction of labor
Objectives: To compare oral misoprostol with dinoprostone for induction of labor and their effects on the fetal heart rate patterns. Methods: In a randomized controlled trial, 200 patients received either misoprostol 50 μg orally for every 4 h, or dinoprostone 0.5 mg intracervically for every 6 h. Cardiotocographic recordings, in 10-min windows 30, 60, and 80 min after prostaglandin administration during induction and continuously during labor, were compared between the two groups. Primary outcome for effectiveness and safety was assessed in terms of the number of vaginal deliveries within 24 h and fetal heart rate abnormalities during induction and labor respectively. Results: Data from 96 patients in the misoprostol group and 95 in the dinoprostone group were analyzed. There were no significant differences in respect of the number of vaginal deliveries within 24 h (RR 1.12; 95% CI 0.88-1.42). The frequency of suspicious and pathological fetal heart rate patterns did not differ significantly but significantly more cardiotocographs in the dinoprostone group had non-reassuring baseline variability 60 min after dose administration (RR 0.33; 95% CI 0.14-0.77). Maternal and neonatal outcomes did not differ significantly. Conclusion: Oral misoprostol is as effective as intracervical dinoprostone for induction of labor with no difference in the frequency of fetal heart rate abnormalities. © 2004 International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.