Sucralfate possesses site protective and cytoprotective actions and heals ulcers effectively, but its effect on gastric mucosal blood flow is unknown. Using an ex vivo gastric chamber preparation, we studied the effect of sucralfate on gastric mucosal blood flow in rats by laser doppler flowmetry. Under both fasting and fed states, measurements of gastric mucosal blood flow and damage were made in rats after topical application of absolute ethanol alone or after pretreatment with sucralfate. Gastric mucosal damage was assessed by measuring the total area of haemorrhagic mucosal lesions. Ethanol induced gastric mucosal lesions were significantly less with sucralfate pretreatment than without (p less than 0.008). Mucosal blood flow significantly fell after ethanol application (p less than 0.001). The fall was significantly less in fed than in fasted rats (p less than 0.05), and after pretreatment with sucralfate 100 mg or 200 mg than without in both fasted (p less than 0.0008 and 0.00001, respectively) and fed (p less than 0.002 and 0.001, respectively) rats. Graded doses of sucralfate (25-400 mg) resulted in an increase in gastric mucosal blood flow in a dose dependent manner (r = 0.731, p less than 0.001). In conclusion that sucralfate increases gastric mucosal blood flow in rats and lessens the fall in blood flow in rats treated with ethanol, and this action may contribute to its protection against the vascular damage of mucosa by ethanol.
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