A study was designed to investigate the possibility of reducing peritoneal adhesion formation in mice by pretreatment with allopurinol. Allopurinol, at a dose of 35 mg/kg of body weight/d significantly reduced the severity of peritoneal adhesions (P < .001), and also the neutrophil response to ischemia (P < .05). Tissue myeloperoxidase activity at the site of ischemic injury was significantly lower in the allopurinol-treated mice at the end of 2 weeks (P < .001). However, xanthine oxidase was undetectable in both control and allopurinol-treated mice. These observations suggest that allopurinol reduces the severity of peritoneal adhesion formation in mice, possibly by reducing the neutrophil response to ischemia.