Effect of cilostazol and pentoxifylline on gait biomechanics in rats with ischemic left hindlimb

J Vasc Surg. 2012 Aug;56(2):476-81. doi: 10.1016/j.jvs.2011.12.051. Epub 2012 Apr 11.


Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of pharmacologic treatment with cilostazol and pentoxifylline on gait biomechanics of ischemic rat hindlimbs compared with nonischemic controls.

Methods: An experimental study was designed using 30 Wistar rats divided into five groups (n = 6): control (C); ischemia (I) - animals submitted to left common iliac artery interruption without pharmacologic treatment; pentoxifylline (Pen) - rats submitted to procedure and treated with pentoxifylline 3 mg/kg twice a day for 6 weeks; cilostazol (Cil) - animals submitted to procedure and treated with cilostazol 30 mg/kg twice a day for 6 weeks; and sham (S) - animals submitted to procedure without artery interruption. Gait analysis was performed using a computed treadmill. Time, number, and duration of each hindlimb contact were obtained. The total number of contacts (TNC) and the total duration of contacts (TDC) were compared between left and right hindlimb and among groups. Left hindlimb ischemic incapacitation index (LHII) was defined by the formula: LHII = (1-TNCleft x TDCleft / TNCright x TDCright) x 100.

Results: Left hindlimb TNC values were twofold lower in I, Pen, and Cil groups than in C and S groups (P < .01). In I, Pen, and Cil groups, TNC values for the left hindlimb were half of the right hindlimb ones (P < .01). Left hindlimb TDC values were lower in I and Pen groups than the other groups (P < .01). Cil group presented twofold increased values, not different from C and S groups (P = 0.16). Right hindlimb TNC values were greater for I group (P < .01). LHII was around zero in C and S groups and 82 in both I and Pen groups (P < .01). Cil group presented a LHII of 42; higher than C and S groups, but lower than I and Pen groups (P < .01).

Conclusions: Cilostazol at a dose of 30 mg/kg twice a day promoted improvement in gait performance in rats submitted to chronic hindlimb ischemia. Pentoxifylline at a dose of 3 mg/kg twice a day did not show this effect.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomechanical Phenomena / drug effects
  • Cilostazol
  • Gait / physiology*
  • Hindlimb / blood supply*
  • Ischemia / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Pentoxifylline / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Tetrazoles / pharmacology*
  • Vasodilator Agents / pharmacology*


  • Tetrazoles
  • Vasodilator Agents
  • Cilostazol
  • Pentoxifylline