• The objective of this study was to determine the effect of pentoxifylline on the clinical and pathologic course of experimentally induced peritonitis in rats. This drug is a methyxanthine derivative that has vasodilating properties and may decrease platelet aggregation. Peritonitis was induced in 40 Wistar rats by creating a closed ileal loop 4 cm long 5 cm from the ileocecal valve. The animals were divided into two groups of 20 animals each. The first group served as controls, while each animal of the second group received 17 mg/kg/day of pentoxifylline intramuscularly from the day of operation until 30 days postoperatively. The survival rate was significantly Increased in the group receiving pentoxifylline and adhesion or abscess formation was considerably reduced. We concluded that the administration of pentoxifylline prolongs significantly the survival of animals with experimental peritonitis and reduces the development of adhesions and abscesses in the peritoneal cavity. This beneficial effect may be attributed to decreased fibrinogen deposits and increased fibrinolytic activity within the peritoneal cavity, thus rendering the bacteria more susceptible to cellular and noncellular clearing mechanisms.
(Arch Surg 1985;120:1141-1144)