Nifedipine-induced gingival overgrowth in rats: Brief review and experimental study

Earl Fu, Shin Nieh, Chiang Tung Hsiao, Yao Dung Hsieh, Ulf M E Wikesjö, E. Chin Shen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


THE FIRST CASE REPORT OF GINGIVAL overgrowth induced by nifedipine (NIF), a calcium-beta blocker, was in 1984. However, the association between gingival alterations and the drug therapy of sodium diphenyl hydantoinate was initially described in 1939. The purpose of the experimental study was to examine the effect of NIF on gingival morphology in an animal model. Forty- five male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into 3 groups. Animals in each group daily received NIF in dimethyl sulfoxide by gastric feeding at a dosage of 0 (control), 30, or 50 mg/kg body weight for 9 weeks. Gingival gross morphology was assessed tri-weekly from stone models obtained from the mandibular incisal region. Animals were sacrificed at the end of study and tissue blocks were processed for histopathologic and histometric evaluation. Histometric analysis was performed at 5 selected tissue levels. Macro- and microscopic significantly increased gingival dimensions were demonstrated in NIF-treated animals compared to control. Although a fibrovascular tissue was observed in the tooth-gingiva interface for both NIF-treated and control animals, it was thicker and appeared earlier in NIF-treated animals. The results of the present study suggest that gingival overgrowth can be induced by NIF in rats and that the gingival overgrowth appears dose dependent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)765-771
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of periodontology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1998


  • Animal studies
  • Gingival hyperplasia/etiology
  • Nifedipine/adverse effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Periodontics


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