A Pilot Feasibility Study of IM OXT on Fear of Pain and Trust in Physical Therapist During OP Rehabilitation After TKA

Study Purpose

This study will examine the effect that a dose of intramuscular (IM) oxytocin (naturally occurring hormone) has on fear of pain and movement and trust in the physical therapist during outpatient rehabilitation after total knee replacement has been performed. Investigators will ask participants to answer questions about fear of pain and movement before several outpatient physical therapy session and investigators will ask participants questions about trust of the physical therapist several times after the outpatient physical therapy sessions.

Recruitment Criteria

Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Healthy volunteers are participants who do not have a disease or condition, or related conditions or symptoms

Study Type

An interventional clinical study is where participants are assigned to receive one or more interventions (or no intervention) so that researchers can evaluate the effects of the interventions on biomedical or health-related outcomes.

An observational clinical study is where participants identified as belonging to study groups are assessed for biomedical or health outcomes.

Searching Both is inclusive of interventional and observational studies.

Eligible Ages 18 Years - 75 Years
Gender All
More Inclusion & Exclusion Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

1. Male or female > 18 and < 75 years of age, Body Mass Index (BMI) <40. 2. Generally in good health as determined by the Principal Investigator based on prior medical history, American Society of Anesthesiologists physical status 1, 2, or 3. Scheduled for unilateral TKA and postoperative physical therapy at Davie Medical Center. 3. Normal blood pressure (systolic 90-140 mmHg; diastolic 50-90 mmHg) resting heart rate 45-100 beats per minute) without medication or for those with hypertension, pressure controlled with anti-hypertensives and with a resting heart rate 45-100 beats per minute. 4. Female subjects of child-bearing potential and those < 1 year post-menopausal, must be practicing highly effective methods of birth control such as hormonal methods (e.g., combined oral, implantable, injectable, or transdermal contraceptives), double barrier methods (e.g., condoms, sponge, diaphragm, or vaginal ring plus spermicidal jellies or cream), or total abstinence from heterosexual intercourse for a minimum of 1 full cycle before study drug administration.

Exclusion Criteria:

1. Hypersensitivity, allergy, or significant reaction to any ingredient of PitocinĀ® 2. Any disease, diagnosis, or condition (medical or surgical) that, in the opinion of the Principal Investigator, would place the subject at increased risk (active gynecologic disease in which increased tone would be detrimental e.g., uterine fibroids with ongoing bleeding), compromise the subject's compliance with study procedures, or compromise the quality of the data 3. Women who are pregnant (positive result for urine pregnancy test at screening visit), women who are currently nursing or lactating, women that have been pregnant within 2 years 4. Subjects with neuropathy, chronic pain, diabetes mellitus, or taking benzodiazepines or pain medications on a daily basis.

Trial Details

Trial ID:

This trial id was obtained from ClinicalTrials.gov, a service of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, providing information on publicly and privately supported clinical studies of human participants with locations in all 50 States and in 196 countries.


Phase 1: Studies that emphasize safety and how the drug is metabolized and excreted in humans.

Phase 2: Studies that gather preliminary data on effectiveness (whether the drug works in people who have a certain disease or condition) and additional safety data.

Phase 3: Studies that gather more information about safety and effectiveness by studying different populations and different dosages and by using the drug in combination with other drugs.

Phase 4: Studies occurring after FDA has approved a drug for marketing, efficacy, or optimal use.

Phase 2
Lead Sponsor

The sponsor is the organization or person who oversees the clinical study and is responsible for analyzing the study data.

Wake Forest University Health Sciences
Principal Investigator

The person who is responsible for the scientific and technical direction of the entire clinical study.

James C Eisenach, MD
Principal Investigator Affiliation Wake Forest University Health Sciences
Agency Class

Category of organization(s) involved as sponsor (and collaborator) supporting the trial.

Overall Status Not yet recruiting
Countries United States

The disease, disorder, syndrome, illness, or injury that is being studied.

Osteoarthritis, Knee
Additional Details

The purpose of this study is to determine feasibility of this study design and identify barriers that altered design could bring to overcome these barriers in the design of a large, pragmatic, multi-center clinical trial. It is also designed to estimate the effect size and variance of the main outcome measures, trust and fear, in patients undergoing rehabilitation after total knee arthroplasty (TKA). The study team hypothesizes that intramuscular (IM) oxytocin, in a dose and time determined by a series of previous studies under this grant to target the brain, will enhance trust and reduce fear and that these will be associated with improved outcomes. Again, the study is not designed to test this hypothesis, but to gather the critical data necessary to test it in a large, multi-center clinical trial that would follow this grant. Participants that have decided to undergo unilateral TKA, will come to the Pain Clinical Research Unit at least 48 hours prior to surgery to confirm consent and complete a series of questionnaires. Participants surgery, anesthesia, and postoperative medication and therapy treatment will be routine. On the first outpatient study visit participants will complete a questionnaire of fear about pain and receive an intramuscular injection of oxytocin or placebo in a randomized, double blind manner. At the end of this session participants will complete a questionnaire assessing the degree of trust in the therapist. Physical therapy be will routine, and the fear and trust questionnaires will be completed at the 2nd, 4th, 8th, and last physical therapy session as well as routine measures of progress and function. The primary outcome measure is assessment of effect size and variability of the trust and fear questionnaires on the 1st and 2nd visit.

Arms & Interventions


Experimental: Oxytocin

Oxytocin IM injection will be given per randomization prior to first outpatient physical therapy session

Active Comparator: Placebo

Placebo IM injection will be given per randomization prior to first outpatient physical therapy session


Drug: - Oxytocin

IM Oxytocin

Drug: - Placebo

Placebo IM

Contact a Trial Team

If you are interested in learning more about this trial, find the trial site nearest to your location and contact the site coordinator via email or phone. We also strongly recommend that you consult with your healthcare provider about the trials that may interest you and refer to our terms of service below.

Wake Forest Baptist Health, Winston-Salem, North Carolina



Wake Forest Baptist Health

Winston-Salem, North Carolina, 27157

Site Contact

Regina Curry, RN

[email protected]