Effect of nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs on fracture healing: A laboratory study in rats

R. D. Altman, L. L. Latta, R. Keer, K. Renfree, F. J. Hornicek, K. Banovac

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

197 Scopus citations

Abstract

We studied the effects of two nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) on fracture healing in rats: Ibuprofen (30 mg/kg/day) and indometh-acin (1 mg/kg/day). Femoral fractures were induced via a three-point bending technique. NSAIDs were administered orally for 4 or 12 weeks. Control animals received no medication. In each group a minimum of six animals were killed at the following intervals: 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12 weeks postfracture. Fracture healing was determined by mechanical testing and histologic evaluation. The bending strength of each fractured femur was expressed as a percentage of the strength of the intact, contralateral femur. Histologic evaluation was performed on serial longitudinal sections stained with hematoxylin and eosin using a qualitative score of maturity of the callus. Ibuprofen and indo-methacin both retarded fracture healing, with significant differences in “mechanical healing” found between the control and experimental groups after 10 weeks of drug administration. Both drugs also induced qualitative histologic changes manifested by delayed maturation of callus, which was noticeable earlier than the difference found by mechanical testing of bone. Our data suggest that NSAIDs have an inhibitory effect on fracture repair that is reversible after cessation of indomethacin but not ibuprofen.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)392-400
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of orthopaedic trauma
Volume9
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1995

Keywords

  • Fracture healing
  • Ibuprofen
  • Indomethacin
  • Rats

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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