The role of pre-ischaemic application of the nitric oxide donor spermine/nitric oxide complex in enhancing flap survival in a rat model.
Spermine/nitric oxide complex (Sper/NO) is a new nitric oxide (NO) donor with a long half-life providing controlled biological release of NO in vivo. The purpose of this study was to determine whether flap survival could be improved by pre-ischaemic or post-ischaemic intravenous administration of Sper/NO. We divided 37 male Wistar rats into four experimental groups. An extended epigastric adipocutaneous flap was raised in each animal. The mean area of flap necrosis was assessed for all groups on the fifth postoperative day, using planimetry software. The average area of flap necrosis was mean +/- s.d. = 68.2%+/-18.1% in the control group, and 29.7% +/- 13.3% in the non-ischaemic controls. The group with pre-ischaemic application of Sper/NO demonstrated an average flap necrosis of mean+/-s.d. = 11.2%+/-5.9%, whereas this increased to 59.2%+/-14.4% in the group receiving Sper/NO 5 min prior to reperfusion. The group with pre-ischaemic application of Sper/NO showed a significantly lower area of flap necrosis than either of the control groups or the group receiving Sper/NO just prior to reperfusion (P < 0.05). The group receiving Sper/NO just prior to reperfusion demonstrated a significantly higher mean area of flap necrosis than the non-ischaemic controls (P < 0.05), but did not differ significantly from the control group. Our data show that pharmacological preconditioning and enhancement of flap survival can be achieved by intravenous administration of Sper/NO. The application of Sper/NO at the end of the ischaemia period or in the early reperfusion period provides no protection against ischaemia-reperfusion injury.
Küntscher, MV; Juran, S; Menke, H; Gebhard, MM; Erdmann, D; Germann, G
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