Objective: To investigate the effects of an anti-platelet drug (clopidogrel) on the prevention of steroid-induced osteonecrosis (ON) in rabbits. Methods: Adult male Japanese white rabbits were divided into two groups and treated as follows: one group received daily clopidogrel mixed in normal saline (AP; n = 35), the other received only normal saline (NS; n = 30). One week after the administration, all rabbits were injected once intramuscularly with 20 mg/kg of methylprednisolone acetate into the right gluteus medius muscle. Three weeks after, both the femora and humeri were examined histopathologically for the presence of ON. The platelet aggregation assay and hematological examinations were performed before and after the steroid injection. Results: The incidence of ON in the AP group (48.5%) was significantly lower than that observed in the NS group (73.3%). The platelet aggregations in the AP group were significantly inhibited by the administration of clopidogrel. The levels of total cholesterol and triglycerides showed no significant differences between the AP and NS group. Conclusion: The present experimental study demonstrated that the administration of an anti-platelet drug prevented steroid-induced ON in rabbits and that platelet aggregation seems to be one of the possible factors involved in the pathogenesis of steroid-induced ON.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pharmacology (medical)