GENERAL PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOPHYSICS, vol.26, no.3, pp.168-172, 2007 (SCI-Expanded)
The aim of this study was to evaluate changes in heart rate (HR), QT and RR intervals and corrected QT (QTc) values in conscious male and female New Zealand rabbits which intravenously received oxytocin (OXT) at different dosages. Animals were divided into 6 equal groups: group I (n = 6 male, received 0.75 U OXT per animal); group 11 (n = 6 male, received 1.5 U OXT per animal); group III (n = 6 male, received 3 U OXT per animal); group TV (n = 6 female, received 0.75 U OXT per animal); group V (n = 6 female, received 1.5 U OXT per animal); group VI (n = 6 female, received 3 U OXT per animal). ECG recording were taken from all animals before injection and then at 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 15 and 20 min of OXT administration. QT and RR intervals obtained at 2 min of OXT administration were significantly prolonged in all groups (p < 0.05) with one exception that is the 1.5 U OXT injected female group where only QT interval did not change. The prolongation of QT and RR intervals persisted for 20 min in 1.5 U OXT injected male group while only QT interval prolongation was obvious for 20 min in 3 U OXT injected female group as for the other groups the prolonged interval were observed for 8-10 min and then returned to baseline values. Generally, a significant prolongation of QTc was noticed in both male and female rabbits at the 2 and 4 min in all groups and bradycardia was noticed at 2 min of OXT administration in all groups. Heart beats returned to normal values in all groups after 8 min of OXT administration. The change of HR, RR, QT and QTc was gender- but not dose-dependent (p < 0.001). The male rabbits were more sensitive to OXT effect then female rabbits. In conclusion, OXT used in therapeutic dosages decreased heart rate and prolonged QT and QTc intervals. Although cardiovascular effect of OXT are of short duration, its use in patient with risk factors for malignant arrhythmias requires more attention.