Objectives: The present study aimed to investigate the oral mucosal wound healing potential of L-carnitine in a rat model.
Materials and methods: Twenty-four Wistar-albino rats were divided into 4 groups: control group (group I), L-carnitine groups (100 and 200 mg/kg/day, intraperitoneally) (groups II and III), and vitamin E group (100 mg/kg/day, intraperitoneally) (group IV). A 1.5-cm linear incision was created on the buccal mucosa of each rat and was left to heal by secondary intention. On the tenth day, rats were anesthetized and sacrificed. The tensile strength of wound was measured with a tensiometer. Hydroxyproline (HYP) and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels in wound were assayed by spectrophotometry. Results were statistically analyzed using a one-way ANOVA analysis (p ≤ 0.001).
Results: In the analysis of tissue samples, there was a statistically significant decrease in MDA levels in group II (p < 0.01) and group IV (p < 0.001). Wound tension strength that was seen in groups II (57.88 %) and IV (48.71 %) was better than group III (33.39 %). Hydroxyproline levels in group II (46.98 ± 1.37) was higher than groups III (29.40 ± 1.64) and IV (38.83 ± 1.41).
Conclusion: Although there was a tendency toward faster healing in the groups receiving L-carnitine, it may have a dose-related positive effect for wound healing.
Clinical relevance: With the advantages of having positive effects on wound healing, being a natural substance in the body, being easy to procure, and having a practical usage, L-carnitine may be clinically feasible for human oral mucosal wounds.