Introduction: Doxycycline is a commonly used antibiotic that is also a potent inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase (MMPs). The use of doxycycline in repairing tendon lesions has been previously investigated and conflicting findings have been reported on its effectiveness. In this study, we sought to evaluate the effects of exposure to doxycycline on Achilles tendon repair.
Materials and Methods: Twenty healthy rats of the same breed and gender were randomly assigned to two groups of sham, and Doxycycline group therapy. The rats underwent a surgical intervention in which a 2mm incision was performed on the lateral sides of the right Achilles tendons. The treatment group received oral gavage administrations of 50mg/kg/day of doxycycline for 30 days. After this duration, tissue samples were taken from the site of the injuries, which were then histologically evaluated for alignment of the collagen fibres, inflammation reaction, cellular density, and fibroblastic activity.
Results: The histological assessment of the tissue samples, revealed significant changes in the repaired tissues of the treatment group in comparison to the sham group; namely more irregularity in the alignment of the collagen fibres, increased cellular density, and increased fibroblastic activity. However, only the alignment of the collagen fibres reached the statistical significance.
Conclusion: The results of this study indicate that exposure to doxycycline may result in the improvement of repair of the Achilles tendon injuries, especially collagen filament integrity.
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