Effects of Local Low-Dose Alendronate Injections Into the Distraction Gap on New Bone Formation and Distraction Rate on Distraction Osteogenesis

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Abstract

Bisphosphonates that constrain bone resorption have a direct effect on osteoclast function. In this experimental study, the effects of low-dose local alendronate injections on the distraction gap (DG) in rabbit mandible at 2 different rates were evaluated.

The experimental study was conducted on 20 male, New Zealand white rabbits. The animals were divided into 3 experimental groups and 1 control group. Group 1 consisted of animals with distraction at the rate of 1 mm/day, receiving postoperative local low-dose alendronate local injections into the DG. Group 2 consisted of animals with distraction at the rate of 2 mm/day, receiving postoperative 0.75 μg/kg of alendronate local injections into the DG. Group 3 consisted of animals with distraction at the rate of 2 mm/day, receiving postoperative 0.2 mL local saline injections into the DG. Group 4 consisted of animals with distraction at the rate of 1 mm/day, receiving postoperative 0.2 mL local saline injections into the DG. All the injections were performed immediately postoperatively and for all groups at 1, 2, 3, and 4 weeks following surgery. The distraction zones were evaluated using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry and histological analysis.

Histologically, bone healing was found to be significantly accelerated in Groups 1 and 4 compared with Groups 2 and 3 (P < 0.05). Bone healing was superior in Group 1 and the difference was statistically significant compared with Group 4. There was a significant increase in mean bone mineral density in the 1 mm daily rate groups (Groups 1 and 4) compared with the 2 mm daily rate groups (Groups 2 and 3) (P < 0.05).

Local low-dose alendronate injections could be an effective way for improving bone formation in distraction osteogenesis. Furthermore, the results of this study did not support the hypothesis that injections of local low-dose alendronate may allow 2 mm/day instead of 1 mm/day of elongation in the rabbit mandible.

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